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May Need To Move - Stupid To Do It Now?

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I'm in the position of needing to move - or thinking about it - to accomodate aged Mother rather than having her have to go into sheltered accomodation or a home. Unfortunately my present house is unsuitable, not large enough, stairs, bathroom difficult etc.

Problem is the usual, the cost. Have been looking at large bungalows but will be around 300K round here; my place might sell for around 240-250K. So I'd be looking to extend my mortgage by around 40-50K, plus pay the horrendous 3% stamp duty etc. EA fees also seem to be 1.5% minimum in these parts.

My question is - if I got a place for 280-290K, has anyone experience trying to get the price down to below 3% 250K via 'the brown envelope' to vendor. Can you be caught out by Land registry or valuers? Alternative might be to STR and hope price goes down in the next 6-12 months, but I guess I may have missed the boat on that one... I'm in a quandary, not a lot of savings and don't want a big mortgage, but I have to do something in the next 6 months or so...

Thanks for any suggestions or advice. :unsure:

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I'm in the position of needing to move - or thinking about it - to accomodate aged Mother rather than having her have to go into sheltered accomodation or a home. Unfortunately my present house is unsuitable, not large enough, stairs, bathroom difficult etc.

You've probably already considered it ... but is there scope to adapt your current place e.g. with a stair lift, perhaps extending to add more suitable facilities?

My understanding is that the brown envelope thing is risky, since by definition it can't be tied to the contract. If you bung the envelope in advance what if they back out of the sale; equally how can they trust you to hand it over later? And the small matter of it being fraud/tax evasion of course.

If you do look at adapting your current place, it might be worth talking to someone from Help the Aged or at least looking at their Housing Choices website section.

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You may be able to get a government grant for a ground floor extension? Not sure if you can still get this and/or if your mum would qualify. Also, if your talking about a place for 280/290 - why arent you offering 250K? regardless

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I'm in the position of needing to move - or thinking about it - to accomodate aged Mother rather than having her have to go into sheltered accomodation or a home. Unfortunately my present house is unsuitable, not large enough, stairs, bathroom difficult etc.

Problem is the usual, the cost. Have been looking at large bungalows but will be around 300K round here; my place might sell for around 240-250K. So I'd be looking to extend my mortgage by around 40-50K, plus pay the horrendous 3% stamp duty etc. EA fees also seem to be 1.5% minimum in these parts.

My question is - if I got a place for 280-290K, has anyone experience trying to get the price down to below 3% 250K via 'the brown envelope' to vendor. Can you be caught out by Land registry or valuers? Alternative might be to STR and hope price goes down in the next 6-12 months, but I guess I may have missed the boat on that one... I'm in a quandary, not a lot of savings and don't want a big mortgage, but I have to do something in the next 6 months or so...

Thanks for any suggestions or advice. :unsure:

I would STR right now if I were you.

This gives you the very important breathing space you'll need between purchaces.

Also think about - 6-12 months in rented with your mum, will give you a fair picture of the new family dynamic, and if it works for you all.

It will allow you to be in a much more flexible position for the next purchase. Better to not have chains. Better purchasing power. No pressure to buy the first thing you see that may not be the best thing.

The next 6-12 months won;t see price rises (imo big falls to come).

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I would STR right now if I were you.

This gives you the very important breathing space you'll need between purchaces.

Also think about - 6-12 months in rented with your mum, will give you a fair picture of the new family dynamic, and if it works for you all.

It will allow you to be in a much more flexible position for the next purchase. Better to not have chains. Better purchasing power. No pressure to buy the first thing you see that may not be the best thing.

The next 6-12 months won;t see price rises (imo big falls to come).

Thanks for the advice, the problem would be persuading my wife to go the STR route. I tried that in 2007, but failed to convince - otherwise I'd be in a much better position than now... The thought of moving twice isn't enticing, but I agree it simplifies things and makes you a cash-buyer.

To the other poster as to why not offer 250K - well I may well do that, though the EA has already said they think that's a piss-take and the lowest the vendors will take is 280K (from asking 300K). Prices are certainly down in this region around 15-20% from 2007, but there's a distinct lack of decent family properties round here, with huge numbers up for let (NE or won't-sell-at-that price people I guess). I therefore get the impression that offering less than 10% under asking stands little chance in this sector of the market. Don't know whether this represents real regional variation or complete agent bullsh1t. Anyone know where you can get an assessment of asking vs. completed prices on local markets?

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Up to you but personally I wouldn't go near any "brown envelope" arrangement. As huw points out, it creates real problems of trust between the parties, since by definition, you cannot include that part of the transaction in any legally binding contract.

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Up to you but personally I wouldn't go near any "brown envelope" arrangement. As huw points out, it creates real problems of trust between the parties, since by definition, you cannot include that part of the transaction in any legally binding contract.

Is it not the case that stamp duty is payable only on the real estate - not chattels? Therefore, if the carpet is particularly thick, and the appliances are perhaps up-market, then perhaps they can be included in the contract at a sales price of, say GBP30,000. The balance of GBP249,999 can be for the house itself.

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Is it not the case that stamp duty is payable only on the real estate - not chattels? Therefore, if the carpet is particularly thick, and the appliances are perhaps up-market, then perhaps they can be included in the contract at a sales price of, say GBP30,000. The balance of GBP249,999 can be for the house itself.

I'm no lawyer. I'm sure one could argue that... but if the revenue found out about the arrangement and considered your valuation of the carpets to be unrealistic I suspect you would potentially face investigation for tax fraud.

Any lawyers here?

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Is it not the case that stamp duty is payable only on the real estate - not chattels? Therefore, if the carpet is particularly thick, and the appliances are perhaps up-market, then perhaps they can be included in the contract at a sales price of, say GBP30,000. The balance of GBP249,999 can be for the house itself.

My understanding is that the transactions must be clearly separate from the property sale; to be safe, you'd have to be able to demonstrate that you would have paid 30k for the appliances even if you were not buying the house. So again, the transaction must happen outside the property contract, with the risk of ending up with some expensive carpets but no house (or the risk to the vendor of not getting the agreed extra payment).

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My understanding is that the transactions must be clearly separate from the property sale; to be safe, you'd have to be able to demonstrate that you would have paid 30k for the appliances even if you were not buying the house. So again, the transaction must happen outside the property contract, with the risk of ending up with some expensive carpets but no house (or the risk to the vendor of not getting the agreed extra payment).

I don't think that it has to be separate, but your chances of persuading the revenue that the second hand value of the "movable" items in a 250K house is 30K, is absolutely nil. They are worth 5K max.

tim

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When we sold in early 2008 our solicitor said that HMRC had clamped down on the 'Pay 15 grand for the curtains' move - and the solicitor handling your sale will have to declare that no other monies are changing hands.

Renting for 6-12 months is ideal - your ideas about the best place for your mum to live may be clearer at that point.

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I'm in the position of needing to move - or thinking about it - to accomodate aged Mother rather than having her have to go into sheltered accomodation or a home. Unfortunately my present house is unsuitable, not large enough, stairs, bathroom difficult etc.

You seem to be in a tricky situation, I also think the "brown envelope" bit is a red herring. With respect to getting under the thresholds, I did something similar myself a good number of years ago but I only paid £1/2k for chattels.

Even if you decide to go down the STR option it could take months to sell your own house (if not years), unless you are prepared to "give it away". As you have alluded to, the best opportunities for STR have now passed.

All starts to get a bit messy but could you not rent out your own house and then rent somewhere more suitable? Presumably your mother also has a property that will need to be disposed of?

As suggested, you could also investigate the possibilities of adapting your existing property but again this could be expensive (or impractical) and I get the impression that you have already discounted this solution.

Sox

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