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    • jas8085
    • By jas8085 6th Sep 17, 10:45 AM
    • 3Posts
    • 4Thanks
    jas8085
    Making an offer on a old house
    • #1
    • 6th Sep 17, 10:45 AM
    Making an offer on a old house 6th Sep 17 at 10:45 AM
    Hi all,
    We are considering making an offer on a house that needs modernisation. We really like the property.

    It needs :
    Full rewiring
    Some gas/pipes work ( to move boiler from the kitchen into the garage)
    New Kitchen,
    New bathrooms,
    Skimming and painting walls (they are full of wallpaper now)
    Replace cieling
    Replace windows (single glazed at the moment)
    New carpets throughout

    Anything else that is likely to need updating given that the vendors didn't do much in the 30 yrs they lived there (apart from installing gas heating). Anything I need to check or account for?
Page 2
    • bxboards
    • By bxboards 6th Sep 17, 9:01 PM
    • 1,292 Posts
    • 1,025 Thanks
    bxboards
    I am involved in buying and renovating a lot of older houses and from your list, I can tell you that the majority of the things you are saying 'need' doing, will not need doing.

    Rewiring - this is the big one, as long as your wires have PVC rather than old black decayed rubber you do not NEED to get it re-wired. It may not meet modern standards, but modern standards are a moveable target. Many people see a survey that says 'does not meet modern standards' and do needless and pointless rewire.

    Gas pipes relocationg - This isn't a need, you want to relocate a boiler. You can't ask or expect a reduction IMHO.

    New Kitchen - can't comment on this, if its a real grotty thing, worth doing. Not expensive, use someone like Wickes. I would be spending around 600 to 700 pounds, it would look like a 4k kitchen when done.

    New bathroom - can't comment on this, if its a real grotty thing, worth doing. Not expensive, use someone like Wickes. 500 pounds unless you real go to town with expensive tiles.

    Skimming and painting walls (they are full of wallpaper now) - definitely not a NEED. See how good the walls are first when a small area of wallpaper is taken down. Chances are you will have lime and horse hair plaster underneath, this can look grotty unwallpapered, which is why people cover it. Consider just painting over it in white (emulsion not vinyl) and see how it looks.

    Replace ceiling - I am assuming lathe and plaster and its cracked? Do not replace, just plasterboard over it and skim, or use 1m wide mesh (like wide scrim tape) and bond it over the ceiling and skim. A days work per ceiling. Allow 2 weeks before going a mist coat and paint. 125 a day per ceiling for a good plasterer.

    Replace windows (single glazed at the moment) - Not a NEED, sorry! But if you are in a noisy area worth doing, if rural and quiet do not bother.

    New carpets throughout - always worth doing, not that expensive. I usually get a whole house re-carpeted for 600 quid, fitters cost about 150 per fitting,

    Without seeing the property I cannot tell you if you should try to negotiate a price drop or if these needs / wants are already priced in. I think at least 50% of what you think *needs* doing, doesn't need doing at all.
    Last edited by bxboards; 06-09-2017 at 9:03 PM.
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 6th Sep 17, 9:36 PM
    • 23,759 Posts
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    Doozergirl
    Utterly Ridiculous.

    What do you do with these houses once you've been involved in buying and renovated them, Bxboards?

    Hands up who lives in a house that isn't listed with single glazing these days?!

    What happens when the plaster falls off the wall when the wallpaper is removed? That is what 20 years of renovation experience tells me happens in any house approaching a century in age that hasn't already been replastered.

    Nearly everything on that list is a bodge. A bodge until the inevitable happens and it all needs doing either because you've eeked the very last drop of life out of things that should have been replaced and enjoyed by the person buying the house (not the people after them) or whacked cheap rubbish in that won't even last five years. £500 on bathrooms, £600 on carpet, painting your own home white. Watch me drop my knickers at a £600 kitchen that looks like £4000. :rolleyes:

    I appreciate that some lack the funds to pay for quality that lasts, but suggesting that vendors shouldn't drop their prices and that buyers should lump paying huge sums for houses that cost far more than their component parts to then put in the very cheapest of fittings to compensate is almost sickening. It sounds like what miserly landlords give to tenants. Because tenants don't deserve quality when the landlord's yields are at risk.
    Last edited by Doozergirl; 06-09-2017 at 9:46 PM.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • glasgowdan
    • By glasgowdan 6th Sep 17, 10:08 PM
    • 2,424 Posts
    • 2,723 Thanks
    glasgowdan
    Doozer... you're definitely getting a different idea to most people here.

    Fact is, and we're talking in general here, that two identical houses on the same street, one has modern fittings, and one has 30 year old fittings, are going to be on the market at DIFFERENT prices. The asking price reflects the level of finish in a house. But you know this and seem to be creating your own argument for some reason!

    You can assume that the asking price of a house (in theory, market forces and buyer optimism aside) reflects the value of the house in it's present condition. I wouldn't buy a house at an inflated price because someone says it potentially could be worth that much after renovations!

    So it should be considered unreasonable to offer less because a house needs new bathrooms. The chances are that the asking price is lower than a house with a new set of rooms.

    That's all!
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 6th Sep 17, 10:14 PM
    • 23,759 Posts
    • 66,110 Thanks
    Doozergirl
    I haven't created the argument at all. I disagree with people who think that vendors don't need to pay for upgrades to single glazing and 30 year old bathrooms.

    It was fabricated that the OP was after an unreasonable price drop and they came back and clarified that their OP said all it needed to say.

    The answers given most recently are that that not a lot needs doing (to any house, apparently) and that the price of the house is already reasonable. All this without even a set of details. Who is fabricating what, exactly?

    And then we get an amateur developer/bodger wading in for measure, promising kitchens that look like they cost £4k and who values workmanship at nothing. I lie. We've got a £150 budget for labour so far on this renovation. Well meaning, but ridiculous.

    Forgive me for not talking generally. There was a real person with a genuine question. I don't disagree that prices are supposed to reflect work, but they often don't and in a very specific sense, the OP is not to be criticised for wanting to research properly.

    This board loves to find the holes to pick. It sounds like an echo chamber at times. Buy all renovation and expect to only do kitchens, bathrooms and decor? Scoff that they're amateur. Ask about developing property? Scoff at the amateurish idea. Actually ask what might need doing to a house? Scoff at them trying to rip the vendor off. Suggest that a bathroom needs replacing? Scoff that it's fine as long as there isn't a tin bath hanging from the wall.

    The best thing you can do when buying a project? Buy the worst house you can find. Far fewer surprises when you expect to do everything.
    Last edited by Doozergirl; 06-09-2017 at 10:38 PM.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • strongboes
    • By strongboes 6th Sep 17, 10:57 PM
    • 82 Posts
    • 58 Thanks
    strongboes
    doozergirl, you have said what I would say had you not, what on earth the rest of you are on about I have no idea.

    Some people in this world look at a house, think yeah ok, make an offer, and then gut it and make it good/exceptional. If you aren't one of those people and think wall papering and painting is a renovation then the OP is clearly not asking for your input.

    The OP is quite obviously asking for others prior experience in a potential renovation, and what they may have obviously missed! Nothing to do with a list of things to bargain a price down. Besides who offers on a property with a letter attached saying you don't like this and that etc. total nonsense
    • bxboards
    • By bxboards 7th Sep 17, 9:03 AM
    • 1,292 Posts
    • 1,025 Thanks
    bxboards
    Doozer... you're definitely getting a different idea to most people here.

    Fact is, and we're talking in general here, that two identical houses on the same street, one has modern fittings, and one has 30 year old fittings, are going to be on the market at DIFFERENT prices. The asking price reflects the level of finish in a house. But you know this and seem to be creating your own argument for some reason!
    Originally posted by glasgowdan
    Agreed.

    Value is in older houses that need work - if you have two houses, 1 at 70k and 1 at 100k, the 100k house will usually have the work done already. The 70k house will need / want stuff doing - so buy the 70k house, spend 5 or 10k on it, and turn it into a 100k house.

    But these needs / wants are likely to be priced in, so is likely to be little scope for further reductions.
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 7th Sep 17, 9:10 AM
    • 23,759 Posts
    • 66,110 Thanks
    Doozergirl
    Agreed.

    Value is in older houses that need work - if you have two houses, 1 at 70k and 1 at 100k, the 100k house will usually have the work done already. The 70k house will need / want stuff doing - so buy the 70k house, spend 5 or 10k on it, and turn it into a 100k house.

    But these needs / wants are likely to be priced in, so is likely to be little scope for further reductions.
    Originally posted by bxboards
    This is not what the thread was about. And you're wrong anyway.

    Houses that have 30% reductions on them, especially that cheap need more than £5-10k spending on them.

    Spending that little doesn't turn them into £100k houses. You're either conning people by papering over the cracks, quite literally, or the house was a bargain and would make £90k if marketed correctly.

    I suspect the former from your previous posts. Which would make you the worst kind of property 'developer' with no integrity or pride in a job well done. All about the money and marketing a lie.
    Last edited by Doozergirl; 07-09-2017 at 9:15 AM.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 7th Sep 17, 9:14 AM
    • 1,641 Posts
    • 4,422 Thanks
    Red-Squirrel
    Hi all,
    We are considering making an offer on a house that needs modernisation. We really like the property.

    It needs :
    Full rewiring
    Some gas/pipes work ( to move boiler from the kitchen into the garage)
    New Kitchen,
    New bathrooms,
    Skimming and painting walls (they are full of wallpaper now)
    Replace cieling
    Replace windows (single glazed at the moment)
    New carpets throughout

    Anything else that is likely to need updating given that the vendors didn't do much in the 30 yrs they lived there (apart from installing gas heating). Anything I need to check or account for?
    Originally posted by jas8085

    Hi there, I bought a house that hadn't been touched since about 1990, a lot hadn't been touched since it was built in the 60s. I did the big stuff at the beginning and am now slowly working my way through the smaller jobs.

    In addition to what you've listed here, and without knowing what age/style of house it is, I would budget for:

    New radiators, possibly adding more, some old houses only have one inefficient radiator for a large living room.

    Some roof repairs, or possibly a new roof depending on the state of it/your survey, also the garage roof it is separate and especially if it is flat.

    Floorboards, what are they like under those old carpets? Not a big job but you might some replacing, especially on stairs.

    Insulation as mentioned above

    Is there a garden? Has it been neglected? If so budget a fair amount of time and/or money for sorting it out.

    Skips. Lots of skips.
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 7th Sep 17, 9:18 AM
    • 23,759 Posts
    • 66,110 Thanks
    Doozergirl
    Hi there, I bought a house that hadn't been touched since about 1990, a lot hadn't been touched since it was built in the 60s. I did the big stuff at the beginning and am now slowly working my way through the smaller jobs.

    In addition to what you've listed here, and without knowing what age/style of house it is, I would budget for:

    New radiators, possibly adding more, some old houses only have one inefficient radiator for a large living room.

    Some roof repairs, or possibly a new roof depending on the state of it/your survey, also the garage roof it is separate and especially if it is flat.

    Floorboards, what are they like under those old carpets? Not a big job but you might some replacing, especially on stairs.

    Insulation as mentioned above

    Is there a garden? Has it been neglected? If so budget a fair amount of time and/or money for sorting it out.

    Skips. Lots of skips.
    Originally posted by Red-Squirrel
    Skips. Great call. Rarely budgeted for but even one is expensive and they add up very quickly.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • jas8085
    • By jas8085 7th Sep 17, 10:42 AM
    • 3 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    jas8085
    Oh skips! Thank you. Adding that to my list now.

    Point taken about the radiators, possible work on the roof etc.
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 7th Sep 17, 10:55 AM
    • 7,257 Posts
    • 7,781 Thanks
    AnotherJoe
    Garden fences.
    If the house has been disregarded i dont imagine they've splashed out on fence maintenance.
    • Grenage
    • By Grenage 7th Sep 17, 11:27 AM
    • 1,204 Posts
    • 1,123 Thanks
    Grenage
    Add a healthy margin for unexpected problems.
    • LHW99
    • By LHW99 7th Sep 17, 11:37 AM
    • 863 Posts
    • 688 Thanks
    LHW99
    When you get the roof looked at / redone, get the workmen to check the state of the chimney (if present). They are often in a poor condition, and can need significant rebuilding which adds to the cost of the roof refurb, but really needs doing at the same time for safety reasons.
    • Mardle
    • By Mardle 7th Sep 17, 12:03 PM
    • 315 Posts
    • 619 Thanks
    Mardle
    Loft access? Our Victorian terrace only had a small hatch over the bath in the rear part of the house. Now it also has a decent sized hatch over the landing in the main part.

    It was fully insulated but goodness knows how they managed it.
    • ReadingTim
    • By ReadingTim 7th Sep 17, 12:20 PM
    • 2,013 Posts
    • 2,926 Thanks
    ReadingTim
    I sometimes think there are people on this board whose entertainment is putting words in OPs mouths for them and then knocking them down.
    Originally posted by Doozergirl
    For someone condemning 'people' for putting words into the mouths of others, you seem to be doing quite a lot of it yourself too. What's you opinion as to who should pay for stone damage your glasshouse?!?

    Who pays probably depends on whether you're on the side, or take the perspective of the buyer or the seller. It also depends on how realistically the property is priced in the first place. Clearly, there won't be many people who would pay the same for an unmodernised property as they would for a modernised one, even if the 'modernisation' is largely cosmetic; and accordingly, the unmodernised one should be priced lower.

    Many of these sort of debates will centre on the extent to which the price does reflect the level of modernisation required, which is impossible to say without a modernised comparable, and whether something is a want or a need, which I'd suggest is a factor of how old, or dated, the current property is.

    With any query relating to the cost of renovations alone, I don't think it's unreasonable to query whether they might have already been priced into the purchase price. Discounting renovation costs for something already discounted for renovation costs isn't very sensible, yet many seem to fall into that trap.

    Furthermore, whilst any buyer wouldn't weaken their negotiating position by admitting it, it's also not unreasonable to test what is a need and what is simply a want, especially if the price already reflects that some renovation is likely. The more cosmetic the renovation, the more likely that it's a want, rather than a need. The younger the offending feature is, the more it's a want rather than a need - a kitchen is no more dangerous and in need of replacement just because it doesn't meet current regulations than an electrical installation. An E Type Jaguar isn't worthless because it doesn't have airbags, nor are listed and ancient buildings all candidates for demolition or 'modernisation' - they're quite desirable, and seem to command a reasonable price.
    • Katgrit
    • By Katgrit 7th Sep 17, 12:44 PM
    • 474 Posts
    • 1,272 Thanks
    Katgrit
    I had my 140 year old end terraced gutted and done up last year. It needed tanking for damp, and a lot of electrical work. I was warned that they wouldn't really know quite how much needed doing until they started. After much discussion we realised it was going to be easier to do a whole rewire rather than to fix 100+ years worth of electric alterations and start from scratch. And that man it was easier to knock off ALL the plaster downstairs to full ceiling heigh, rather than just the bottom metre for the tanking. And if we were going to go completely back to brick and the house didn't have any cavity in the walls that meant I might as well fork out for internal insulation and use foam backed plasterboard. And if we were movinh ceiling lights and going back to brick we might as well get new ceilings to get rid off ridges in the original where internal walls had been removed over the years. I got rid of the wooden windows at the front andnd put double glazing in. There was penetrating damp from cracked rendering outside, so replacing windows meant it made sense to get the front rerendered at the same time. Half the kitchen came out and went back in again, the bottom half of the stairs came out several times. From an initial £3,500 to sort the damp proofing out the cost went up and up and up. All in, including carpets for whole house, painting throughout, rent for the 4 months I had to live somewhere else, removals there and back, light fittings, rugs, curtains, big new corner sofa, sideboard, van hire to pick up the sideboard, other new bits of furniture...... absolutely EVERYTHING in was £21,000. A lot of those things were WANTS rather than NEEDS, or at least I wanted to do them now while it was easier, rather than 2 years down the line. It COMPLETELY wiped me out paying for it, but my house is perfect now. Lush thick carpets and so so cosy. The biggest difference was getting the insulated plasterboard.....my energy bills have come down by a quarter already.

    My point being (after all that waffle) was the £3,500 that NEEDED doing got bumped up by much more that WE MIGHT AS WELL DO NOW BECAUSE IT MAKES SENSE TO. Bit different to WANTS, so it's not all black and white.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 7th Sep 17, 1:00 PM
    • 4,848 Posts
    • 2,117 Thanks
    Crashy Time
    Are you genuinely asking for things you might have forgotten/overlooked/didn't think about, or are you using all of this work as an excuse for offering a lot less than the asking price?

    If it's the latter, then some of the things you claim it "needs" are not actually "needs", but simply "wants". Which is fine, just don't expect the vendor to pay for them.
    Originally posted by ReadingTim

    You don`t need an "excuse" to offer a lot less than the asking price in this nonsense of a housing market, just do it.
    • phoebe1989seb
    • By phoebe1989seb 7th Sep 17, 1:17 PM
    • 3,087 Posts
    • 6,338 Thanks
    phoebe1989seb
    Loft access? Our Victorian terrace only had a small hatch over the bath in the rear part of the house. Now it also has a decent sized hatch over the landing in the main part.

    It was fully insulated but goodness knows how they managed it.
    Originally posted by Mardle
    This ^

    We have three loft hatches. One is standard size. The other two are 40cm x 28cm and 30cm x 26cm

    Funnily enough, the larger one is in the oldest (1850s) part of the house, while the smaller hatches are in the 1920s extension.

    Oh, and we're not listed, but have single glazing (mainly Crittall) throughout. We wouldn't replace as it's a feature of the property, but were we planning on staying would fit secondary glazing. I'm guessing to replace with DG replacement Crittall type would cost an arm and a leg, as - iirc - we have 26 external doors/windows.

    Our house had been neglected for at least fifty years. The PO's excuse was that he was keeping it as a shrine to his ex GF whose parents were the PO As a result it was full of woodchip and other horrors (they'd even plastered the undersides of shelves inside original Victorian cupboards with woodchip!). It would be hilarious if I hadn't been the person tasked with its removal, lol.

    Most of the lime plastered walls beneath the woodchip/decades of glossy paint were beyond saving so DH has had to replaster the lot. Thankfully he's good at plastering, despite it not being his day job - as it's saved us another fortune.

    I'll be avoiding anywhere with woodchip in future.
    Paid off mortgage early - mortgage-free since age 40 (2007)

    Over £40,000 mis-sold PPI reclaimed
    • ReadingTim
    • By ReadingTim 7th Sep 17, 1:50 PM
    • 2,013 Posts
    • 2,926 Thanks
    ReadingTim
    You don`t need an "excuse" to offer a lot less than the asking price in this nonsense of a housing market, just do it.
    Originally posted by Crashy Time
    But the fact is that a lot of people do attempt to excuse, or justify, their offer with reference to something such as renovation costs to absolve themselves of responsibility for taking the more confrontational approach which is that they're unable, or unwilling to offer around the asking price.
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 7th Sep 17, 1:55 PM
    • 1,641 Posts
    • 4,422 Thanks
    Red-Squirrel
    Skips. Great call. Rarely budgeted for but even one is expensive and they add up very quickly.
    Originally posted by Doozergirl
    Yep, I wouldn't like to think how much I've spent on skips in the last 18 months, and I didn't budget for them at all in my planning! So easy to overlook but essential.
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