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What happened here?

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-125...=2&tr_t=buy

This flat has been on Rightmove as "Sold Subject To Contract" for months at a price of £449,950. Still "Sold Subject To Contract" but today the price has changed to £420,000 :blink:

It looks like the sale has now fallen through.

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-125...=2&tr_t=buy

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It looks like the sale has now fallen through.

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-125...=2&tr_t=buy

I have picked this up from page 13. Is this why the sale has fallen through.

Posted by Rickpoker.

Charter house: Good size flats and excellent prices. I know these flats have been talked about before on this forum. I looked at very large 2bed over 850 sq ft in good condition bought for £250 down to under £200. So a good buy at the bottom of a crashing market? sorry guys read this letter sent to lease holders:

As you will be aware the service charge accounts for the above development have now been sent out for the forthcoming year. Whilst CPM endeavour to maintain service charge budget costs to a reasonable level, the previous two years maintenance costs for “Charterhouse New Build” have proved to be unsustainable.

This, in part can be attributed to damage incurred through water ingress via the roof and poor plumbing installation during building construction affecting the fabric of the building and the lifts.

It is understood that Persimmon Homes have now instructed a consultant to carryout an independent survey of the roof. However, during last year, other major forms of service charge expenditure have been incurred notably to the communal entrance doors, water charges, external/ internal lighting and the electric entrance gates.

The sheer volume of Insurance claims for Charterhouse New Build, over the same period has meant that CPM will experience difficulty in obtaining insurance cover for this building.

Further to our conversation this morning regarding the above development I can confirm that over the last two years the insurers have incurred approx £250k worth of claims costs. This is going to make it extremely difficult/almost impossible to obtain any sort of insurance cover from June onwards taking this in to account.

Although the roof being repaired/replaced will help the situation unfortunately a large amount of the claims seem to be due to the sub standard plumbing that has been carried out on site and nothing that is done is going to change the horrendous claims experience that all insurers will take in to account when offering terms & deciding on a premium for a particular policy.

Potentially if no insurer is willing to offer any sort of cover on the development the management company may find themselves in a situation where the damage from these claims is not paid for and thus for cannot be repaired making the situation progressively worse as time goes on.

The substantial increase in insurance premium costs for the forthcoming year is mostly responsible for the severe “hike” in the budget. CPM were advised by the brokers to almost treble the anticipated premium costs in the hope that at least one insurance company would take on the “risk”. However, this by no means confirms that we will be able to obtain a Buildings Insurance policy.

Both Persimmon Homes and your Freeholder have been made aware of our concerns, together with the detrimental effect these costs are placing on the service charge budget. It has been suggested to your Freeholder that perhaps in the light of the above information they would prefer to seek their own Block Buildings Insurance Policy, however, we have still to receive an acknowledgement of our letter.

In the light of the above situation, CPM have now requested that our brokers seek to obtain a separate Block Buildings Insurance policy cover for Maritime Chambers, Provincial House, Neptune House and White House, when the insurance policy is due to be renewed on the 1st of June 2007. The reason being is that these residents are being severely compromised in relation to the increase in the overall budget for the Management Company, due to the number of claims being submitted by residents of Charterhouse New Build.

Whilst it is understood that the N.H.B.C are still very much involved with your development in their attempts to address inherent defects, these matters are very much outside of CPM’s remit and because of this, we are solely reliant upon the information being reported back to us by third parties.

Currently the service charge arrears for your Management Company have reached an all time high, and, as a consequence it has become virtually impossible for CPM to undertake any form of maintenance work of late due to the severe shortage of funds.

If the Management Company cannot operate due to lack of funding, it will become unlawful for CPM to continue to provide contract services in the knowledge that there are no funds available to meet the invoice payments required.

At this point in time we wish to make it clear that CPM will not be compromised in any way, nor undertake any Act in the knowledge that it is breaking the law and therefore, should the Management Company become devoid of funds, all services including Maintenance Contractors for the above development, will undoubtedly be withdrawn and will not be resumed until such time as the service charge account can support the Contractors' payments.

Failure to meet your service charge obligations will place you in breach of your Covenant and therefore there will be a possibility of a legal prosecution being made against you, which I am sure you would choose to avoid.

Charter house looks to be that they call a lemon in the car world!! By the way from what i hear this letter has been turned down many levels from what it should be.

So now i'm looking at the Parkview development i'll let you know how it goes!!

Rich ;)

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  • 3 weeks later...
I have picked this up from page 13. Is this why the sale has fallen through.

Posted by Rickpoker.

Quick update on the situation at Charter House:

  • Management company now being taken over by residents

  • NHBC have assumed all responsibility, along with Persimmon, for build problems and are on-site fixing them

  • All issues to be resolved within 2-3 months

  • Insurance renewal has now taken place...and is over 20% cheaper than it was for 2005/6, very much conflicting with the correspondence from CPM!

The letter quoted was a case of the management company attempting to shift blame...when the main issue was actually caused by them claiming from the insurer rather than NHBC. I've just bought a unit there that was the steal of the century because of potential buyers getting spooked by iffy window-seals (put in by a company that's now bankrupt!) and a drainage problem because the balcony tiling wasn't angled to allow run-off.

The building is rather 'Blue'(!), but considering an appartment around half the size (with one less bedroom) at Telephone House would have cost £80k more then it's a no-brainer. New-builds are still being snapped up for BTL which, at current interest rates, will leave give rental income around 70% of mortgage payments (based on 90% LTV) in Oceana Boulevard and Telephone House. Combine this with the fact that they'll all be second hand in two years....and the 110% rental return (at current prices) for Charter House makes a lot of sense...especially when you consider the cost per sq ft is ~40% lower!

....and before asks....no, I'm not desperately trying to sell a 'damp, squalid little flat' here :D

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....and before asks....no, I'm not desperately trying to sell a 'damp, squalid little flat' here :D

I think the sellers of large white elephants in the building would be more concerned!

I notice a google for charter house and southampton

http://www.google.co.uk/search?source=ig&a...earch&meta=

brings up this thread. Bummer - huh!

btp

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The building is rather 'Blue'(!), but considering an appartment around half the size (with one less bedroom) at Telephone House would have cost £80k more then it's a no-brainer. New-builds are still being snapped up for BTL which, at current interest rates, will leave give rental income around 70% of mortgage payments (based on 90% LTV) in Oceana Boulevard and Telephone House. Combine this with the fact that they'll all be second hand in two years....and the 110% rental return (at current prices) for Charter House makes a lot of sense...especially when you consider the cost per sq ft is ~40% lower!

So interest is greater than rental income on an asset which is declining in value? You may have to run that by me again if you're willing. I suspect fixing the window seals may not entirely rectify the situation.

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So interest is greater than rental income on an asset which is declining in value? You may have to run that by me again if you're willing. I suspect fixing the window seals may not entirely rectify the situation.

Sorry that was confusing....rental income >110% vs mortgage interest...whereas Telephone House/Oceana coming in around 70% based on current prices...ie. BTL would bring in 30% less revenue than you were paying out on mortgage interest. Charter House decline down to build issues and insurance 'dodginess'. Management fees for this year were ~£2k due to the problems and no guarantee of buildings insurance....all now fixed, and letter from management company since the one quoted in which insurance has been acquired at 20% less than last year, rather than the 100% hike that was budgeted for in this years management fees.

After having three seperate surveys done, it is (basically) poor seal installation....a couple of parts need fabricating and powder coating to match the delicious shade of blue, a new membrane is being installed below a balcony and...that's it! The previous problems with the roof and plumbing were all resolved by NHBC, hence the reduced insurance quote....and Zurich obviously performed full survey of the building to ensure everything was sorted.

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Sorry that was confusing....rental income >110% vs mortgage interest...whereas Telephone House/Oceana coming in around 70% based on current prices...ie. BTL would bring in 30% less revenue than you were paying out on mortgage interest. Charter House decline down to build issues and insurance 'dodginess'. Management fees for this year were ~£2k due to the problems and no guarantee of buildings insurance....all now fixed, and letter from management company since the one quoted in which insurance has been acquired at 20% less than last year, rather than the 100% hike that was budgeted for in this years management fees.

After having three seperate surveys done, it is (basically) poor seal installation....a couple of parts need fabricating and powder coating to match the delicious shade of blue, a new membrane is being installed below a balcony and...that's it! The previous problems with the roof and plumbing were all resolved by NHBC, hence the reduced insurance quote....and Zurich obviously performed full survey of the building to ensure everything was sorted.

Thanks, yes, that does make it sound more attractive, at least initially. I'd be a bit twitchy about buying a city centre flat in particular at the moment because the 'city living' marketing sheen is beginning to look a bit thin. I think I'd be one crack house closure & defenestration away from losing 25% of market value (see the Basingstoke/Crown heights thread if you're bored). Also interest rates seem likely to continue to rise for some time, possibly again tomorrow, and like many others here I wonder if the economy is about to run out of steam.

Although it's attractive in comparison with Telephone House, does it mean it's necessarily a good deal? What are your reasons for thinking that prices are sustainable?

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Am I the only one that thinks a return of 110% is a bit of a piss poor investment? Factor in the risk on top and it seems even poorer value for money.

Still if it's acting as a break on pricing for other newbuild flat developments. ;)

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Am I the only one that thinks a return of 110% is a bit of a piss poor investment? Factor in the risk on top and it seems even poorer value for money.

Still if it's acting as a break on pricing for other newbuild flat developments. ;)

Hi SC,

I think you've gone and frightened the bull away. This is a pity because I was looking forward to learning more about the miraculous powers of new window seals. (Would the Titanic have sunk? Guess we'll never know now.)

Also, I wonder if looking at things like yield net of voids and management charges, instead of just comparing price with Telephone House, might make this seem less like the bargain of the century and a no-brainer in a slightly different sense. I hope Dazzler considers this before putting pen to contract.

Edited by somethingfishy
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Hi SC,

I think you've gone and frightened the bull away. This is a pity because I was looking forward to learning more about the miraculous powers of new window seals. (Would the Titanic have sunk? Guess we'll never know now.)

Also, I wonder if looking at things like yield net of voids and management charges, instead of just comparing price with Telephone House, might make this seem less like the bargain of the century and a no-brainer in a slightly different sense. I hope Dazzler considers this before putting pen to contract.

It sounds as though this gerry-built development is rapidly turning into the same sort of liability as Rowner. In that instance several years work and investigations by the various local government/agencies/investment bodies have concluded that the only solution is to dynamite it. Let's hops this 'development' doesn't end up going the same way. Rowner is a squalid drain on the local economy which blights the lives of those unfortunate enough to have to live in it.

So much for BTL city-living being the answer to all our housing problems.

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It sounds as though this gerry-built development is rapidly turning into the same sort of liability as Rowner. In that instance several years work and investigations by the various local government/agencies/investment bodies have concluded that the only solution is to dynamite it. Let's hops this 'development' doesn't end up going the same way. Rowner is a squalid drain on the local economy which blights the lives of those unfortunate enough to have to live in it.

So much for BTL city-living being the answer to all our housing problems.

I'm not familiar with Gosport, about a year ago I was hoping to buy a flat in Portswood/Bassett/Highfield, but shocked at the asking prices relative to sold prices a year or two before that. Also very few sales at these kind of prices seemed to be actually making it onto the land registry figures.

From a quick Google, I think this is what you're referring to:

http://www.parliament.the-stationery-offic...9/Debate-9.html

Although I'd hope that construction techniques have improved since the 1960s, I do wonder if a quick buck can be made from building to a minimum standard with a bit of tarting up to rake in 'city living' types, then 10 years down the line it all starts to fall apart. Charter House doesn't seem to have made it that far though.

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I'm not familiar with Gosport, about a year ago I was hoping to buy a flat in Portswood/Bassett/Highfield, but shocked at the asking prices relative to sold prices a year or two before that. Also very few sales at these kind of prices seemed to be actually making it onto the land registry figures.

From a quick Google, I think this is what you're referring to:

http://www.parliament.the-stationery-offic...9/Debate-9.html

Although I'd hope that construction techniques have improved since the 1960s, I do wonder if a quick buck can be made from building to a minimum standard with a bit of tarting up to rake in 'city living' types, then 10 years down the line it all starts to fall apart. Charter House doesn't seem to have made it that far though.

An informative debate - many thanks for the link. There seem to be multiple examples from (Rowan Point onward) where non-traditional build techniques have failed. The debate refers to I believe REEMA homes (and similar, constructed in the mid-fifties) serious defects in which weren't apparent during the period of right-to-buy purchases. Portsmouth City Council had a similar problem with high-rise housing near QA Hospital, large numbers of flats on this estate had been more or less uninhabitable from the late 1960's onward - eventually the estate was demolished and low-rise housing now replaces it.

The more I see, the more I think bricks and mortar are the least likely to cause problems, and the cheapest to repair.

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An informative debate - many thanks for the link. There seem to be multiple examples from (Rowan Point onward) where non-traditional build techniques have failed. The debate refers to I believe REEMA homes (and similar, constructed in the mid-fifties) serious defects in which weren't apparent during the period of right-to-buy purchases. Portsmouth City Council had a similar problem with high-rise housing near QA Hospital, large numbers of flats on this estate had been more or less uninhabitable from the late 1960's onward - eventually the estate was demolished and low-rise housing now replaces it.

The more I see, the more I think bricks and mortar are the least likely to cause problems, and the cheapest to repair.

I don't really understand enough about the relative merits of maintaining flats (new or old), shared across many residents, compared with house maintenance paid for by the owner. The higher storeys of blocks of flats could potentially cost a lot more, and I think insurers are wary above 6-ish floors (or whatever the maximum height of scaffolding can be). I don't know if penthouse management fees are higher for this reason.

There's a risible tower block redevelopment (slighly too new to be REEMA) near where I live in Basingstoke which has a crane to lift external material, it would be immensely expensive to bring back in 10 years if any corners have been cut and it needs re-doing. Housing associations own a significant proportion of new flats, I'd be surprised if they are that bothered about upkeeping buildings beyond the legal minimum. If so, we can expect to see the gradual run-down of city centre flats into eyesores. It could well be a re-run of the 1960s, but with the fleecing of anyone who got caught up in the city living fiasco.

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I don't really understand enough about the relative merits of maintaining flats (new or old), shared across many residents, compared with house maintenance paid for by the owner. The higher storeys of blocks of flats could potentially cost a lot more, and I think insurers are wary above 6-ish floors (or whatever the maximum height of scaffolding can be). I don't know if penthouse management fees are higher for this reason.

There's a risible tower block redevelopment (slighly too new to be REEMA) near where I live in Basingstoke which has a crane to lift external material, it would be immensely expensive to bring back in 10 years if any corners have been cut and it needs re-doing. Housing associations own a significant proportion of new flats, I'd be surprised if they are that bothered about upkeeping buildings beyond the legal minimum. If so, we can expect to see the gradual run-down of city centre flats into eyesores. It could well be a re-run of the 1960s, but with the fleecing of anyone who got caught up in the city living fiasco.

There are some high-rise developments around which are both structurally sound and pleasant to live in. There is however a direct correlation between built-design and people's behaviour - build crap and the feral quickly take-over.

Most high-rise buildings suffer deeply from poor-design which encourages violence, vandalism, and neglect. Couple this with the fact that occupants have little or no capacity to influence maintenance and you have a recipe for a multitude of problems.

There is a staggering arrogance amongst architects who design buildings which they won't live in themselves, and their acolytes who think anything which looks good on paper must by definition be foisted on the rest of us. This snobbery is no better illustrated than by twaddle like this:

http://www.retrowow.co.uk/architecture/60s...eflections.html

For anyone who knew it The Tricorn was a disaster. The build quality was atrocious, shops were dingy with little or no natural light to speak of and the flats above were running with water. The building itself was not on a human scale, with ample hiding places for muggers at every corner. Everywhere you went in this thing it smelt of stale piss or vomit - testament to the same hidey-holes as used by muggers. There were no friendly walk spaces for pedestrians, and the car parking was brutal and ugly. On the drawing-board this building looked good - in reality it was confusing, confused and unworkable. Even in high summer on a brilliantly lit sunny day this soviet-style silo was offensive to all that's best in humanity. I suspect that Basingstoke's Crown Heights will prove to be a similar liability.

Ironically, the prat who wrote this twaddle compared it to Euston Arch - missing the obvious point that The Tricorn was erected only after clearing a much-loved site of mixed-housing and local shops. The Tricorn would have been the building that replaced Euston Arch, not the arch itself.

Edited by happy?
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Wasn't some tosspot trying to get listed building status for the Tricorn? The only thing that was good for was as a backdrop to some mad max post apocalypse film.

Weird how these "monstrous carbuncles" get planning permission yet you try to get planning permission for a modest LID of non conventional environmentally sustainable materials.

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Hi SC,

I think you've gone and frightened the bull away. This is a pity because I was looking forward to learning more about the miraculous powers of new window seals. (Would the Titanic have sunk? Guess we'll never know now.)

Also, I wonder if looking at things like yield net of voids and management charges, instead of just comparing price with Telephone House, might make this seem less like the bargain of the century and a no-brainer in a slightly different sense. I hope Dazzler considers this before putting pen to contract.

Hi!

I tend to have that effect on people I'm afraid! :lol:

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Wasn't some tosspot trying to get listed building status for the Tricorn? The only thing that was good for was as a backdrop to some mad max post apocalypse film.

Indeed, I think the Portsmouth Society amongst others. Laudable though the idea might have been in theory (significant building, architectural merit, unique should be preserved, you'll regret doing this etc.) the building itself just didn't work. It was threatening to walk anywhere, had serious leaks, and was depressing to be in. Several attempts were made to find uses for it (including a night club) but it's sheer brutalism won out in the end. Some people clung onto it (probably suffering from Stockholm Syndrome) most people realised it was time for it to go.

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Sorry chaps - wasn't frightened away....have just got out of hospital and still recovering from a near-drowning incident caused by poor window-seals!

I did a fair amount of research before signing my life away....and was just using Telephone House as a comparison for a new-build. With regard to 10% return being a poor investment for a rental.....this is a 10% return just on rent v costs and doesn't take into account long-term inflation. Take your pick of any city-centre appt in Southampton and it's likely to be lower, or indeed negative! I'm not saying it's the best investment in the world....but the main purpose of this one is to be my home, and allow me to rent it and accrue long-term capital gain without costing me anything if I go and work overseas in the near future.

To clarify on the other comments:

  • Was taking mngt fees and £100 a month to cover ad fees etc into account (although I have no intention of letting this one at the moment, it's nice to know it'd pay for itself)
  • The management fees for the block were projected at almost £2k per unit for the year due to the insurance issues, but £700 has just been credited back after the revised costs after this was sorted. Approx costs for next year should be ~£1100K...which is fine for me (Imperial Appts over the road is >£2.1k per year....but obviously a lot prettier!)
  • On the problems, after having several surveys I'm well aware of exactly what the problems were/are and what's being done to resolve....I can't really say any more than that! If there's no condensation between the panes, the brick-work is sound, there's a dribble of water coming through a gap between a window and a stained carpet below it....I think we'd all agree it probably is a window seal! I mentioned that wasn't the only issue...and had the balcony metalwork removed and a new membrane fitted below it last week under the NHBC. There is a remaining guarantee, the builder has admitted liability and employed a team full-time to resolve any problems....which mainly do revolve around poor window installation due to a cow-boy contractor (as the roof/plumbing issues were all fixed a while back). Provided this is taken into account during the purchase decision and seriously reflected in the price, I'm really not too worried. Had I bought new, suffered a deflation on the value of the property and had to wait several years for it to be resolved then I'd be upset! The major drop in prices at Charter House is/was due to build faults and insurance issues....the second of these is solved and the first is 80% of the way there, with acceptance of liability and ongoing work to resolve the remaining problems.

In many respects I agree with the 'doom and gloom' view and the 'standard 2 bed flat' situation in Southampton City Centre has spiralled out of control, hence the correction in prices over the last two years. One of my flats just outside the city centre was ~£190k just over two years ago and an equivalent went recently for £165. Supply and demand rules, and on a new average sized 2 bed flat the current pricing is going to leave a lot of people disappointed when they go to sell.

Taking the correction over the last 2-3 years into account, and as long as you don't go new-build at a vastly inflated price, there's still reasonable investments to be made....but mainly in either 3 bed in the city, or something a lot larger just outside. Anyone trying to make a fortune overnight by buying flats is going to have a very difficult job....but as long as you could survive 7% interest rates, buy something a bit different to the norm and look at it as a long term investment then I don't think you're not necessarily going to go bankrupt......

On bog-standard 2 bed 'luxury' city-centre appartments....I'm definitely with everyone on the bear front....and it'll be very interesting to look back on this thread in a year or two's time and see how things have panned out!

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