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MADDSNIPER

Thinking About Buying First Home - Newbie Questions

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Hi all, I've finally saved up a decent deposit and I have went and viewed a few properties and now one of them Im thinking about making an offer on but there is so many things I'm clueless about so I have some questions that hopefully you guys can help me with:

1. how can you tell how old a property is?

I ask because In my mind the property seemed newer than what the EA was making out, I'd just like clarification on when it was built, where can I check this.

2. rates, how can you check what they are?

3. what is the order of things, i.e.. you make the offer and if its accepted then you would look to getting a survey done wouldn't you? and if the survey shows something you don't like you are within your rights to remove the offer?

4. if the property has sitting tenants are you legally obligated to let them stay until the end of their signed agreement without signing a new letting agreement with them?

5. if you want to live in the house but it has sitting tenants, will this affect getting a mortgage, i.e.. Do you have to get a buy to let mortgage?

6. rent from DSS, how can you check how much it is?

7. Is it a good idea to talk to a financial advisor? how exactly do they get paid?

8. I understand that you need a Solicitor to transfer the deeds and do other things (what exactly else do they do?) should I ring around a few different Solicitors and ask for price quotations? (I've never actually used a Solicitor for anything in my life.)

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Hi all, I've finally saved up a decent deposit and I have went and viewed a few properties and now one of them Im thinking about making an offer on but there is so many things I'm clueless about so I have some questions that hopefully you guys can help me with:

1. how can you tell how old a property is?

I ask because In my mind the property seemed newer than what the EA was making out, I'd just like clarification on when it was built, where can I check this.

2. rates, how can you check what they are?

3. what is the order of things, i.e.. you make the offer and if its accepted then you would look to getting a survey done wouldn't you? and if the survey shows something you don't like you are within your rights to remove the offer?

4. if the property has sitting tenants are you legally obligated to let them stay until the end of their signed agreement without signing a new letting agreement with them?

5. if you want to live in the house but it has sitting tenants, will this affect getting a mortgage, i.e.. Do you have to get a buy to let mortgage?

6. rent from DSS, how can you check how much it is?

7. Is it a good idea to talk to a financial advisor? how exactly do they get paid?

8. I understand that you need a Solicitor to transfer the deeds and do other things (what exactly else do they do?) should I ring around a few different Solicitors and ask for price quotations? (I've never actually used a Solicitor for anything in my life.)

1. ask EA, they have no reason to hide it from you

2. Interest rates? see a financial advisor, some wont charge you but will get their fee from your mortgage holder.

3. An offer is not binding, you can retract at anytime. Get a survey after you've made an offer.

4.Not sure about this one, the contract is with the previous owner not the house.

5/6 are you buying a first house as a buy-to let? not smart IMO

7. Yes, see 2

8. Their are alot of solicitors that like to do alot of conveyancing and may even offer you a fixed price, ask around.

8. side note: you really have to pester them IMO

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1. ask EA, they have no reason to hide it from you

2. Interest rates? see a financial advisor, some wont charge you but will get their fee from your mortgage holder.

3. An offer is not binding, you can retract at anytime. Get a survey after you've made an offer. Providing you are in England, in Scotland it works differently.

4.Not sure about this one, the contract is with the previous owner not the house.

5/6 are you buying a first house as a buy-to let? not smart IMO

7. Yes, see 2

8. Their are alot of solicitors that like to do alot of conveyancing and may even offer you a fixed price, ask around.

8. side note: you really have to pester them IMO

2. Council band rates, ask the vendor and/or council.

3. In England the process is roughly.

  • Get a mortgage in Principle - so you know the ball park of what you can afford to borrow.

  • Go and look at the property.

  • Offer on property. Get offer accepted.

  • Start instructing conveyancing solicitors, mortgage peeps and get surveys done.

  • Further negotiation if required.

  • Complete contracts and move in.

4. Generally steer clear. Houses with sitting tenants are cheap for a reason. Tenancies that existed prior to the AST nonsense we have to put up with today have a lot of rights. They can't be moved out, can pass on the tenancies to children and there are strict rules on how much you can put up the rent each year.

5. You should get the house with vacant possession. i.e. it is up to the person selling the house to make sure no one is living in it when the sale is completed. If not then you will have issues with the mortgage people and generally it will be a BTL style mortgage rather than a standard owner/occupier mortgage.

6. ??? Do you really care? - http://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/search.aspx

7. Probably a good idea, it is a lot of debt to be taking on and a couple of quid up front may save you thousands later on. They can be fixed fee or commission based. It generally seems to be preferred to take fixed fee as they won't be influenced by the value of the commission.

8. Ring around, ask others locally who they used and their opinions.

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2. Council band rates, ask the vendor and/or council.

3. In England the process is roughly.

  • Get a mortgage in Principle - so you know the ball park of what you can afford to borrow.

  • Go and look at the property.

  • Offer on property. Get offer accepted.

  • Start instructing conveyancing solicitors, mortgage peeps and get surveys done.

  • Further negotiation if required.

  • Complete contracts and move in.

4. Generally steer clear. Houses with sitting tenants are cheap for a reason. Tenancies that existed prior to the AST nonsense we have to put up with today have a lot of rights. They can't be moved out, can pass on the tenancies to children and there are strict rules on how much you can put up the rent each year.

5. You should get the house with vacant possession. i.e. it is up to the person selling the house to make sure no one is living in it when the sale is completed. If not then you will have issues with the mortgage people and generally it will be a BTL style mortgage rather than a standard owner/occupier mortgage.

6. ??? Do you really care? - http://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/search.aspx

7. Probably a good idea, it is a lot of debt to be taking on and a couple of quid up front may save you thousands later on. They can be fixed fee or commission based. It generally seems to be preferred to take fixed fee as they won't be influenced by the value of the commission.

8. Ring around, ask others locally who they used and their opinions.

Good point about Scotland, thank for correcting me

does 'sitting tenants' always mean 'regulated tenancies?

I once saw a lovely house for sale for half the price of those around it but was 'subject to a regulated tenancy'

Obviously I stayed away.

Interestingly enough the rent was 795 whereas the other houses in that area rented for 1600.

I found as well that the tenants children can inherit it!

Unbelievable when you compare with todays rental market

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Thanks guys for the information so far.

Just to give you some more info on this house that im looking at.

the EA said that it was taken over by the bank so its the bank selling it, it is currently what i would call very cheap with only one offer on it so far. the EA said there was sitting tenants that are there until March but they have told him that they would like to stay on past that. They dont pay the rent themselves it seems it is paid through what the EA called "DSS" which I understand was the old department of social security which dosnt actually exist any more yet the term is still used quite alot.

Squeeky: "Generally steer clear. Houses with sitting tenants are cheap for a reason. Tenancies that existed prior to the AST nonsense we have to put up with today have a lot of rights. They can't be moved out, can pass on the tenancies to children and there are strict rules on how much you can put up the rent each year."

what is AST? The people living in the house did appear to be looking after it quite well, but if I cant actually have them removed at a later date so I can live in it myself thats not so good. I should also maybe point out that im in N. Ireland if that makes any difference to the applicable law.

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Thanks guys for the information so far.

Just to give you some more info on this house that im looking at.

the EA said that it was taken over by the bank so its the bank selling it, it is currently what i would call very cheap with only one offer on it so far. the EA said there was sitting tenants that are there until March but they have told him that they would like to stay on past that. They dont pay the rent themselves it seems it is paid through what the EA called "DSS" which I understand was the old department of social security which dosnt actually exist any more yet the term is still used quite alot.

Squeeky: "Generally steer clear. Houses with sitting tenants are cheap for a reason. Tenancies that existed prior to the AST nonsense we have to put up with today have a lot of rights. They can't be moved out, can pass on the tenancies to children and there are strict rules on how much you can put up the rent each year."

what is AST? The people living in the house did appear to be looking after it quite well, but if I cant actually have them removed at a later date so I can live in it myself thats not so good. I should also maybe point out that im in N. Ireland if that makes any difference to the applicable law.

Assured Shorthold tenancy

ask the EA what kind of tenancy they are on.

If they are on a regulated tenancy they will ave been there for over a decade.

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