Buying a house - first steps



Definitely keep some money back for emergencies.


You’ll want to be able to build up a buffer for things like a boiler failure, or if some roof tiles slip.

You’ll also want to be able to afford to do any general decorating/refurb work that the property might need.

Whether you do that after you move in, or keep some of your deposit back for an emergency fund will depend on the condition of the property you choose to buy. The survey should identify any works that should be undertaken within the first year or so, and should identify the age of appliances that would entail significant outlay should they need to be replaced.


Can’t even get through to the fucking HA to ask about the asking price…

Not sure what the best move is here really, on paper just going to an 85% LTV deal on the same terms seems sensible but is the fact the lender down valued it indicative of us potentially buying a place that is about to suffer from a price crash or whatever? Fucking Brexit…

The galling thing is, pulling out will see about £800 down the drain as well


What share are you going for? Obviously the smaller the share the lower the risk.


50% so it’s fairly significant I think


Yeah that is a fair size, if you were going 25% or whatever then it wouldn’t be such an issue.

I dunno (very helpful).


Viewing somewhere in a couple of hours that looks pretty good, but there’s some slight weirdness: it was last sold a year ago for £345k (checked on the Land Registry too). It had been significantly refurbished by then, because I found the old listing* and the pictures are the same as the current listing.

It went on in March at £415k and is now relisted with a new estate agent at offers over £400k.

Anything about that smell fishy? I guess if it was bought last year, done up in six months, then flipped, that would explain a 20% increase in price. I’m worried that my lender’s evaluation wouldn’t stack up to that, because nothing on the street goes for anything like that.

*actually, maybe what I’m seeing is the original listing after the refurb? That would make way more sense.


Are you looking at Zoopla?

I think your caveat at the bottom might be right. Zoopla still include the previous listings with dates, so you should be able to check there. Rightmove only includes the photos from the most recent listing, I think.


rightmove is pretty scattergun. The house we bought had old photos on old listings, some others we were interested in had more recent photos on old listings. Think it depends whether it was listed on rightmove at the time or it’s been updated as a records keeping exercise in the years between. Imagine zoopla will be similar


If you can find out who it was listed with they might be able to send the file they had from the time. Though that might be relying on estate agents not being utterly useless subhuman scum


Zoopla is usually better for past listings than Rightmove. Our house, for example, was listed a few times before we bought it, and each of those listings has it’s own page and photos.


This is a significant detail. I know it’s obvious, but you need to know what’s so special about the one you’re viewing. People make a big deal out of “ceiling prices”. You’re right to be cautious, and you ought to ask probing questions at the viewing, but it could still be fine.


And on and on it rumbles…

Person moving out now has quoted us a price for leaving the white goods but the inbuilt oven apparently needs replacing which is her responsibility as far as I’m aware?


Zoopla and Rightmove. The more I think about it, the more I think it’s pulling the photos from the original listing in March. I Google stalked the current owner and they’re a tradesperson, so the story fits. I’ll check with the agent, though.

It’s had a big extension put on which has been filled with a nice new kitchen. The rest of the refurbishments are more or less cosmetic, but that’s the biggie.


There’s a lot to be said for the old saying “buy the worst house on the best street rather than the best house on the worst street”.

Unless you’re feeling lazy and rich, I’d walk away, because otherwise all you’re doing is lining developers pockets and stoking house price inflation.


Yeah, I think it’s true, especially if its your first place. I wouldn’t do it again though as I don’t think I have the energy to go through building works again.


I don’t think I have this luxury in Cambridge! It’s still below the average price for inside the city limits, and the area is fine. It’s not a desirable location, but there’s nothing wrong with it (my gf has friends who live a few streets away).


Look at it. Ask questions. Make your own mind up.


If you don’t want the oven then say you’re not buying it. Remember you’re talking about a purchase that’s probably significantly less than 1% of the money you’re dealing with overall. This is one of the areas where vendors can be dicks and you might have to make a choice about eating it or not.


She’s saying I’ll leave the oven for you to sort but also give you a fridge/freezer and washing machine or she’ll sort the oven but we’ll have to pay for the other white goods.

Coin toss really innit and pretty insignificant in the grand scheme of things.