The decluttering, cleaning, vacating, pandering, nailbiting antics of the stressed out house sellers

(997 Posts)
Spirael Thu 29-Nov-12 14:08:31

Starting a new thread, since our old one was almost full!

Anyone suffering the stresses of trying to sell a house is welcome to join us; anyone here to tell us our houses are crap and/or overpriced is not. wink

Movingtimes Wed 03-Apr-13 15:48:32

Littlecrystal, I'm intrigued by why you've changed your mind if you thought the house was horrible.
Honestly, the impression I'm getting from EAs is that they are not at all interested in hearing from you unless your house is already under offer. So I'd probably hold on. And if you weren't initially that keen on the house, perhaps something you like better will have come on the market by then.

littlecrystal Wed 03-Apr-13 15:55:53

Thank you MovingTimes! You are probably right. That house is a bit awkward and need a bit of work (old asbestos boiler removed and central heating installed) but when I thought again, it would work for us if the price is right.

CuddyMum Wed 03-Apr-13 17:27:55

Back from viewing. It's the original old house but with a new estate built around it. The house is great - lots of character and rooms etc. but is overlooked all round by the new houses and there's also a park right next to it. We are right next to a park now and occasionally you do get teenagers hanging out, although the vendor of the house we viewed said he never has any problems (well he would). Left feeling a little confuzzled - food for thought...

Toomuchtea Wed 03-Apr-13 17:53:43

It is a tricky one when a house is now surrounded by houses which are completely different to it. I suppose the thing is, if it's putting you off, how much would it put other people off when/if you came to sell?

Tau Wed 03-Apr-13 18:36:47

Okay... I am LIVID! angry

Estate agent - Housetree- called, and said there was someone who was interested in a viewing but who was concerned about the possibility of our property being of mundic block construction (Cornish thing), which would make the house unmortgageable. Estate agent, not being from Cornwall, had never heard of mundic block before.
So I explained that we've already had the test done, and our house has turned out to be clear of mundic block and is thus of sound construction and completely mortgageable.

Today the estate agent called back to say that he had checked it out, and there was only one bank who would give a mortgage on our 'kind of' property, because of the mundic block construction (which it doesn't have!!! We have proof!!!) and the potential viewer did not want to go with that bank so backed out.

To make matters worse, the EA suggested that from now on he would steer potential viewers towards that one bank for their mortgage, so the (non existent) mundic problem of our house would not be an issue.

So I think the EA has misinformed the potential viewer as well as the mortgage lenders, and has thus cost us a client, and intends to have an approach that will cost us more clients! I want to %$& sue them!
And change agents of course.

CuddyMum Wed 03-Apr-13 18:50:03

Toomuchtea - I can't imagine sunbathing there! It's just not going to work. We've just driven past the bungalow again because at least that has potential despite being in the narrowest lane ever!

Tau - change agents!

Movingtimes Wed 03-Apr-13 19:14:41

OMG Tau - that is incredible. Could you not get it through to the EA at all that your property was not affected? Definitely change agents.

monkeytennismum Wed 03-Apr-13 20:24:49

Tau - is the person you're dealing with at the EA the Manager? If not, I'd ask to have a meeting with the Manager, explain what has happened and ask what they're planning to do to rectify the problem. If it is the Manager, then change agents pronto.

alwayslateforwork Thu 04-Apr-13 00:52:12

Tau, that is terrible - what an idiot. What on earth is he doing selling real estate in that part of the world if he isn't aware?

We have someone coming back for a second viewing tomorrow. <eek>

It's a bit of a kick in the teeth, as they had apparently discounted our place as they wanted something higher spec. They are apparently only coming back to see what upgrades they could do to make it worth their while to bother... (Ie to see if they could get our much cheaper place and upgrade it for less than they would pay for a ready to go high end show home)

Eeeeee. As long as they don't decide they want to knock thousands off the existing price for the sake of their upgrades (to what is a mid-range house in this market - I mean, we do have frigging granite countertops lol, it isn't as though it's warped mdf and peeling linoleum) then they can plan to rip everything out and put what they want in...

Dh was a bit miffed. I did point out that they'd be looking at bathrooms, kitchen, and changing all the flooring, as well as a complete repaint, which is, after all, what we'd be doing if we wanted (or could afford) higher spec.

This place isn't perfect by a long shot, but it's priced as a mid range place, not as a high end designer vacation home. Because it isn't. So I will be mightily dischuffed if they make a piffling offer because they plan to change everything.

There are a few new 4 beds on the market today... Time to have a wee look see...

Tau Thu 04-Apr-13 07:43:08

I managed to stop the worst steam coming out of my ears.

I explained the whole mundic thing to the EA, we sent him scanned copies of the report, but he kept insisting that the house was not mortgageable except through that one bank. Which made me paranoid and think that he had a deal with that particular bank. Now that I've had some sleep I just think the EA is not the sharpest tack in the drawer...

Today I intend to visit the bank of which our EA said they were not willing to offer a mortgage on our property, to hear what they actually say.

The EA also mentioned reinforced concrete which is totally irrelevant to our property... hmm

I am not sure if he is the manager, or who is the manager. The man we originally dealt with in the EA was a lot more sensible - hopefully he is the manager.

Tau Thu 04-Apr-13 07:53:53

Alwayslate... I guess thsi IS a bit late now, but if these people do not buy your house it may be an idea to ask a local redecorator for a quote so you know how much it would actually cost to redecorate.

I've heard (even last night on tv from Phil Spencer ;-) ) That changing the kitchen is often pointless, because people will want their own style kitchen anyway.

Tau, that sounds absolutely ridiculous. I can't understand why the EA isn't even listening to you? Definiitely need to get on to the manager.

Our For Sale sign went up yesterday and the EA is coming to measure up etc today. Feel a bit anxious about the whole thing...

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 09:43:55

Tau I am speechless about your agent. Can you change the agencies?
My house is on Rightmove since this morning. The pictures are not as good as I expected, so I will have to push the agent to replace some of them. He also promised a floorplan, which is not there. But anyway, I am so excited.
I know I am being super naive optimistic but I am hoping to have sold by this time next week. I will accept a low offer as long I can afford my new house.
But of course they will fight over my house and go into bidding war and offer over asking price I have to face a reality of slow market...

CuddyMum Thu 04-Apr-13 10:16:50

Hope your second viewing went well Alwayslate and that the new houses on the market are of interest. It sounds like a fast moving market out there!

Tau - I'd be completely pissed off too. I'd change agents regardless as you need to have a good working relationship with the EA.

Good luck Quack - hope you sell quickly.

Littlecrystal - are you brave enough to post a link? Make sure you get that floor plan - I struggle without one.

We are hoping to see a house today that I'd previously ruled as I thought DH wouldn't like it but after showing him last night on Rightmove he does! It's a large Victorian semi - something that really isn't us (we're quite modern) but I'm coming round to the idea. Am a little afraid of the original features, open fireplaces everywhere, sash windows and particularly the Aga! We'd have to buy their furniture - ours just wouldn't go! The garden isn't huge but is completely walled and private. It's north westerly - not sure how that affects the sunshine.

Tau Thu 04-Apr-13 10:23:56

Good luck with the sales, Quackquack and littlecrystal. I hope yours goes more smoothly than ours.

The EA is listening to me -kind of anyway- he just doesn't understand...
It's bad enough that he knows nothing about mundic block, but as an estate agent he should at least know the difference between 'prefabricated reinforced concrete' and 'standard concrete brick construction'.

I went to the local branch of the bank he mentioned, and the woman who dealt with mortgages was quite baffled by my story, She asked if I was sure I had understood the agent correctly. So I said yes, I'm very sure. I just don't think HE understands anything correctly.
Annnnnyway, the woman said that of course they do mortgages on properties who have had a mundic block test with an A-grade outcome, because that means that there is no mundic block in the property...

So back home my partner called the EA again (not me... apparently I am not subtle enough wink.), and the EA was already packing in a bit. He will try to contact that potential viewer again, so we wait for that. If that person still comes, then you never know, they may be the buyer we need. Otherwise I shall pressure partner to go to another estate agent. I am not happy to pay that much more but I am really fed up with having to do everything ourselves.

Plus, I am wasting my designated study time with this and I've only slept four hours last night. Ugh.

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 10:28:16

CuddyMum sorry I am not brave enough... yet! but I can PM you the link.

And about that house that you are hoping to view today - if you are modern I am not sure if you can get round to the old house. I bought an old house because everyone liked it and said it has a character and a potential and I hoped that if I come to sell it, it will be easy to sell. Well one of the major reasons for my sale now is that I still don't like it. I cannot put my finger what exactly, and people compliment on it, but it is not me. If I'd like it I could extend and would not need to move.
I am hoping to buy 1960's which is ugly for most eyes, but I love it.
It is a costly mistake to make. So make sure you love it before buying.

As regards a north-west garden, that would be my best direction. Hot south and west sun sometimes it could be too much. Calm west-north sunshine is my personal favourite.

CuddyMum Thu 04-Apr-13 10:43:28

Am waiting impatiently for the agent to ring me back to see if I can view this afternoon (hurry). We've never had an old house before but I'm kind of curious to see if I'll like it - I feel I may. I am partial to a 60s/70s house too though smile

A little bit concerned about being semi detached - will the neighbours hear my squabbling teenage girls?

Thank you for the link littlecrystal smile

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 13:16:26

I got my first viewer this afternoon after putting the house on Rightmove in the morning, so happy for the things starting finally to roll. Sorry to babble but just wanted to share my excitement as I sit at work and wait for the feedback.

Wow, little crystal, that was fast!

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 14:30:55

Another viewing booked for Saturday, so happy. That is London so perhaps that is why it is fast.

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 14:48:24

Oh dear 4 viewings booked in total, my house is a star! Thank you, house. smile

littlecrystal Thu 04-Apr-13 14:49:05

Sorry for being selfish. It will calm down after day 1 and I will become an ordinary desperate seller again.

alwayslateforwork Thu 04-Apr-13 14:54:14

Tau, we had the whole house painted last year. It cost us a fortune grin. The issue isn't really decoration, it's more that the market here is saturated with high grade vacation / hotel style homes, with granite, wall to wall travertine, gorgeous hardwood flooring and massive feature windows with mountain views, rather than, well, family homes...

So, when you spend all day looking at high end identikit stuff, and then view ours, it looks shabby in comparison. Well, not shabby, but just obviously not as high end. And it won't be, without a good forty grand of improvements to make it as identikit as the rest... and there's no option for an extension or a garden to make it more appealing to the family market. We're definitely middle range...

There are two very different sorts of buyers here - the folk who live and work here, and the out of towners looking for a vacation property. Ours really is the high end of the first market (but it's small for a family home), and isn't high spec enough for the second - although it could be. The market is completely flooded with vacation stuff of a similar size (and I mean flooded) - and we are looking to buy a family house, which are, um, under-represented, shall we say?! Hence, the family homes that are affordably priced whizz off the shelves, because we are all desperately trying to find somewhere and fighting over little available stock.

It's such a small town, and a pretty closed market for residents - there really isn't the option to look anywhere else - the nearest other town is half an hour away, but in order to buy there you need to have a permanent job in the valley (it's inside a national park). And the nearest place in the other direction is an hour and a half to the city. Hence the vacation crowd. Dh actually works in the city, so has a three hour commute every day, and I work inside the park (so we could buy there, but that would add an extra hour of commute on every day for dh, more in the winter, and as the roads in the park are less well maintained during the six months of the snow, lol, I suspect it would be a bit of a nightmare...)

So, we are stuck with looking within this one small town (it's a good stuck to be in, honest!) but it does mean that potential buyers (and sellers) are all looking at exactly the same property... It's interesting!

Well, better get cleaning, I suppose!

Littlecrystal, we've had six or seven in the first two weeks - but it is definitely slowing down... Good luck today! Fingers crossed they love it!

Cuddy - we're in a townhouse at the mo (although the neighbors on one side are vacation owners and never there) and I am always terrified that the neighbors can hear me shrieking at the kids! Most of the stuff we are looking at is detached - but we still have a semi on the list that hasn't moved for months (the EA says it is horribly overpriced, but the owners won't budge on that) - one of the first things I asked was about noise transmission. I am so bored of trying to get the kids to not thunder up and down stairs...

CuddyMum Thu 04-Apr-13 15:17:41

Well done littlecrystal - that's crazy London for you! Fingers crossed for a quick sale.

I'm off to view the Victorian house at 4pm. I suspect parking issues...

Alwayslate - three hour commute - wow!

Good luck with the Victorian house cuddy. I think they're lovely but I'm biased!

And I moan about my hour commute, eek! I don't think I could hack 3!

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