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Posts posted by YoungFTB

  1. How about keeping a house price crash site free from politics?

    This is effecting the local economy so why shouldn't it be discussed? There are plenty of threads on the main forum about Greece & Spain's austerity measures and their protests

  2. Need some advice guys, I placed an offer a couple of weeks ago on a property that was agreed.

    My solicitor was hired that day but there is still no sign of a contract or documents from the sellers solicitor, turns out they did have an issue but that's supposed to have been 100% resolved 1 week ago and my solicitor was assured the documents and contract where on there way. This was one week ago, I've still heard nothing from my solicitor so can only assume the documents have still not arrived.

    My patience is waring thin at this point, I've been reminded a few times now I'm a cash buyer and in a strong position bla bla bla

    What I wanted to ask is, who do I place a lower offer with? My solicitor or the estate agent? Do I include a timeframe (i.e. 7 days or I walk etc?)

    I'm at the point now where I'm honestly not bothered if I walk away from this property, it was in my price range but now I'm thinking perhaps I should just wait another 6 months when I factor in other things like the violence in Belfast atm

  3. For those of you who are in Northern Ireland:

    There is a protest at Belfast City Hall on Sunday at 11am for those who are AGAINST this mindless violence; several people are joining the list of attendees every minute, as I type this we are at 2200 and rising; I normally wouldn't bother with stuff like this but I will be attending, I think the world needs to see that the majority do not support mindless violence.

    I encourage all from Northern Ireland to sign up, or at the very least to spread the word via Facebook:


    Nice! Hopefully I can make it!

  4. Why don't more people sell their house without an EA?

    Any house I've looked at where I've had the opportunity to speak to the owner or the person renting the property I've always found out considerably more information than I've gotten from a showing from an EA. I'm not even being particularly critical of EAs in this instance because the truth is they could not know as much info as an owner or a person renting the property.

    I do find it odd in this economic climate that more people are not selling their own houses, even an individual listing on PropertyPal costs £20, a for sale sign, Gumtree & PropertyNews listing and I'd say you're doing a lot of the same advertising as EAs at a fraction of the cost!

  5. In my most recent conversation with an EA I was told, w/o any prompting on my part, the middle market was stuck. Obvious inference was asking prices are still too high. With that in mind, I'm anticipating decent sizes drops in asking prices to continue into 2013. Still seeing examples of 20K being taken off houses in one day and continuing to sit unsold.

    For 2013, I would like to see more houses coming on realistically priced in the first place - think there's still far too many kite fliers. There's a fair bit to play out yet.

    Yup I can second that! I've spoke to a few who have said the same thing, repossessions & auctions are driving the market atm at the bottom end but until the middle of the market gets moving then the transaction numbers are doing to remain low and that won't change unless sellers start getting more realistic about their asking prices.

    Was the EA talking in relation to the middle market in a specific area or NI in general?

    I think it was NI in general but may apply more so to the more desirable areas like Belfast and North Down

  6. No, my circumstances have changed. I am married now and living in my wife's house. So, my interest in the housing 'market' is mostly academic curiosity.

    Though I do intend to build at some stage, but that is a good few years off. So I am still keeping a eye on the new technologies for houses. This is proving useful with upgrading the current house.

    The current house is less than 10 years old and I am surprised at how hard it is to heat as it is relatively new. We have just had the boiler serviced which has made a difference, but the house is still hard to get comfortably warm when it is is freezing outside. Though I was was told that the boiler should have been bigger for the size of the house. Rather than replace the boilder I am looking at radiator reflectors and digital thermostats to make the system more effiecnt.

    The house is a story and a half, so the roof slopes down into the bedrooms upstairs. I had a look at the insulation in the roof and was surprised at what was used in the slope above the bedrooms - 50mm polestyrene with lots of slits in it for expansion. Then there is no fiberglass insulation within a foot of the down lights and there are 11 of them.:angry: The down lights themselves (as discussed here before) are causing cold draughts down out of the ventilated roof space. Even when they are switched on I can feel cold air when standing under them. The solution I have come up with is to use opencell spray foam insulation on the whole roof. The foam can fill the slopes above the bedrooms right up to the apex of the roof. This will double the insulation and make the roof space air tight. It is an expensive soultion, but I think it will be worth it for the comfort.

    I have already installed energy saving bulbs, but the down lights were a problem. The kitchen was using 6x50watts down lights and the light was still poor dry.gif Most down lights have a narrow beam. It is only bright directly under the light. The problem was finding a good replacement. Many cheap LED bulbs don't last and don't give good light either. I was recommended a LED bulb by the electrician at work. He said they were good, reliable and relatively cheap for an LED. I have to say the light in the kitchen is much better and we are now only using 18 watts total!

    Looking forward to having a toasty, well lit house for Christmas B)

    Aww congratulations on getting married :)

    I've read one or two of your posts on the self build stuff recently, you sound like you know your stuff. I'm in the process of buying atm and intend to super insulate the house "if" the sale goes through so I'm starting to take a keen interest in anything to do with energy saving now. What are the name of the LED bulbs you have installed?

    That sounds like a bit of a nightmare with your wifes house, that must be annoying with a relatively new house. You'd like to think it would be better insulated than that!

  7. YoungFTB are you buying in the Donegal Road area? I remember a poster with a user name like yours was going to buy in this area.

    Years ago I think I may have mentioned that I wanted to buy in the Donegall Pass area, of coarse then I came to my senses :)

    But no not the Donegall Road area, I am buying in the Lisburn Road area of Belfast. I don't want to be anymore specific than that until the keys are in my hand ;)

    You'd have to be pretty mental to buy in the Donegall Road area of Belfast atm, talk about having to do your due diligence. The entire area is being regenerated over the next 5 years, I saw that programme on UTV Live about the area last week, god help those people who purchased a 2 bedroom terrace in 2006 or 2007 and had their houses vested by the council and are now in massive negative equity with no property anymore :(

  8. The delay may not lie with the seller's solicitor but the seller.

    The first house I tried to buy was held up in probate for nearly six months. The one I finally did buy took 2 months.

    Actually I'd have thought 4-6 weeks is pretty quick. 2-3 months is not unusual - searches, queries, more queries, and solicitors who need a stick of dynamite shoved up their orifices.

    :( No wonder the process of moving house is so bloody stressful!

  9. So basically 4 weeks is pretty quick in the scheme of things, I would suggest that you look at 6 weeks but don't be surprised if its longer. The bottom line is that you keep on the ball by contacting the ea and your solicitor frequently as you feel that you need to.

    Thanks Russ that was some great advice! If I don't feel I'm getting anywhere, how frequently should I be contacting my solicitor?

    Agreed. I bought have bought and sold three places in the Uk in my life, and each time at least one of the solicitors involved was rubbish and slowed the whole thing down. Only constant pressure kept it going.

    Constant pressure from yourself on your solicitor or constant pressure from your solicitor to the sellers solicitor?

    I find the whole process frustrating as I've mentioned, I've been so pro active with everything that's been in my control, now I wonder do I just leave things to the solicitors and show some patience or do I need to badger them the same way I've done with the EAs, surveyors and any other due diligence I've carried out myself if I wasn't getting answers or results within a reasonable time frame.

  10. I just have a question about dealing with solicitors,

    If you've agreed a price for a property and it's gone Sale Agreed and both sets of solicitors have been informed. How long "should" it take for the sellers solicitors to send all or even some of the documents for the house to the buyers solicitor?

    What's considered a reasonable amount of time to have passed before you start seriously getting on your solicitors case to crack the wipe or push for the documents? 1 week, 2 weeks or is this really just a matter of patience?

    I'd appreciate some advice on this matter from those who have been through this frustrating process, I'm a bit fed up if I'm honest because everyone says a property transaction roughly takes 4 - 6 weeks from start to finish, I think I'm starting to understand why it takes so long :(

  11. IMO your best bet for value for money is either going to be a repossession or an auction property, my preference being at auction due to not having to worry about gazumping which is a concern with repos.

    Like everything though due diligence is an absolute must but I feel it's probably your best bet to get a property 30, 40 or even 50% under rateable value (roughly 2005 prices)

    A lot of people on this forum have very specific houses they want to buy in areas where most probably buyers don't need to sell and that's why quite a few people here are frustrated because they can't buy the property they want at it's true market value because the sellers won't sell it for what it's worth currently.

    I've spoken to quite a few EAs recently and they've all been in agreement that repos and auctions are what is driving the market down atm, with only the bottom end & top end of the market showing any decent amounts of transactions currently.

  12. I can't understand why they would have put oil-fired heating in if they are on mains gas. Have you checked that there is mains gas to the property?

    Yeah first you'll want to check to make sure you can get gas for the property, if you want to get gas installed it'll cost around £2000 - £3000 in total. This is a very rough figure though.

    If it's a relatively new oil central heating system I'd just keep it but if it's a oil central heating system over 10 years old then it would be worth considering the outlay to get gas installed and make sure you get the best combi boiler you can afford.

  13. A very rough idea is to look at this post.


    If you accept the average figure from the Govt index is about 95K then plot it on the Nationwide index to see the year. You could also do it with the Halifax index to get a very rough idea.

    Thanks Doccyboy!

    Not quite. Using those figures, four years at 10% a year is a 46% increase from starting point. Three years at 20% a year is then a further 72% increase, giving about a 150% increase overall - the 100,000 house of 1998 became the 250,000 of 2005. This then became the 2007 bubble price of 400,000. Madness. A 50% (?) drop since gives a price of 200.

    So your 1998 100,000 house is likely worth 200,000 - a 100% increase. And if you'd got out in 2007 you could be reading this on your yacht in the Bahamas.

    Thanks Yadayada for correcting my back of a napkin maths attempt :)

  14. If Rateable value of houses in Northern Ireland is roughly the valuation of house prices in 2005 and now in many areas of NI the price of houses is 100% lower than this 2005 figure then does anyone have any idea at what year house prices are at currently?

    I know it's almost impossible to establish this but even if there was a 20% increase in house prices year on year from 2002 - 2005 (60% increase) and before 2002 a 10% increase year on year for the previous 4 years then surely that puts us back in the 1999 - 1998 sort of date range for house prices currently?

  15. The EA gets a referral fee from the solicitor or sending work their way.

    I figured as much :)

    Not worth it if their % fee is scary. Seriously talk to a small local firm. They'll be best placed to handle this.

    Do not use ANY legal or financial service recommended by the EA or developer. They are out to benefit themselves not you. Shop around.

    Ah yes the devils in the detail!

    My advice, for what its worth - never take the advice of the selling agent.

    However, in saying that there are firms getting roasted in the courts at the minute ans they are all very aware of their duty to their client. None of them can afford any slip ups as their PI insurance has rocketed..

    Thanks guys for all your advice, it's much appreciated!

    One last thing I wanted to ask when contacting local firms about solicitor fees, I've asked for a few now via email and all of them are just an estimate.

    This has me a little concerned as it's not set in stone the amount I have to pay, should I be concerned by this or do the estimates usually only vary by 10% - 20% depending on the situation when it comes to final payment?

  16. Good advise. I would also add. With Repo's don't skimp on the legal advice.

    Any advice on that front? One or two estate agents I spoke to seemed overly keen on directing me to Solicitors they knew that didn't charge a fee if the buyer was gazumped at the last minute.

  17. Not always will there be as much to do with the house. We bought a repo this time last year.

    Upon buying...

    Plumbing: The water was only turned off at the valve under the sink, so no problem there, just bled the radiators. Hot press needed reconnecting but it was only one wee pipe that had to get put back on, not a big deal.

    Electrics: Only the trip switch flicked off and an electric top up needed.

    Potential Damage to house: None at all. Only some possessions of the former owners which hadnt been taken away. Quick call to charity shop had it all collected and the rest binned.

    Unwanted letters etc: Some for a wile, our postman i think filtered a lot of these away after we handed him a reck of them with Return to Sender on them.

    All in all, we probably got off pretty lightly. Delighted with how it went, even though there was a few shaky moments when we thought someone was gonna gazump us after our offer accepted. Thankfully the bank rejected the higher offer to stick with ours.

    Good luck with whatever you decide to go with, my advice would be, if its the right house dont be afraid to go for it. But at the same time, dont get emotionally attached to 'the one'. There will be others that tick the boxes too!

    Thanks mate!

  18. I asked Colliers once if they as fixed charge receivers had to put a notice in the papers - they said not.

    I've had positive experiences with Colliers, I like their setup. Nice people!

    That's good to know, thanks Doccyboy!

    So is it a fair assumption that companies in liquidation are more likely to have their property sold by a fixed charge receiver like Colliers?

    If you agree a price for a property with a fixed charge receiver like Colliers and it's sale agreed, are the terms similar to a property owned by a private seller and the property is taken off the market? Unlike a repossession where a property is advertised and anyone can potentially gazump you up until the contracts are exchanged and you've got the keys in your hands?

  19. Hi guys, I'm looking at a property at the moment and apparently the Company who own the property have dissolution status and they are in the process of being liquidated.

    They are a company who had a property portfolio

    I wanted to ask if anyone could shed some light on whether the process for placing an offer on a property of a company in Liquidation has the same terms and conditions as repossessed properties that are being handled via an asset management company. i.e. Public Notice Offer for accepted offer etc

    I also need to establish if the Dissolution of the company has been voluntary or compulsory as this would make a difference too concerning whether (Voluntary) the company could still be in charge of their own decisions and actions Versus (Compulsory) in which case it's the creditors calling the shots and I'd assume would be much more likely to be under repo like terms and conditions concerning offers placed on the properties, just an assumption but if anyone could shed some light on the situation concerning liquidations I'd really appreciate it.

  20. Auctions are certainally on the radar for houses, keep a close eye on them. Building sounds like a world of pain but maybe going have to start thinking about that as an option!

    Pros and cons with everything I guess :) That's what I've been finding over the past 3 months looking for a place, I'm not enjoying the experience that's for sure! :P

  21. North Down, the home of people wanting lots of money for their house they bought for a pittance XX years ago and when they can't get it they have the bright idea that they can sell the garden off to make even more money!

    I'm coming across this a lot as the most important thing to me is space/surroundings/privacy..

    What about looking out for a small plot of land at auction and building a new house on it? Easier said than done I guess and depends on budget, finances etc

    Definitely keep an eye out at the auctions, houses seem reasonably priced in the middle market but doing your due diligence is an absolute must!

    I nearly got caught out buying a place at auction, once I had a survey done on the place it was going to cost a fortune to update!

    If I had the money I'd build from scratch, might take 6 months - 1 year but it's built to specification and you don't have the headache of worrying about the list of things a surveyor reports back with to repair/replace!

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