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House hunting - things to avoid



  • Murphybear
    Murphybear Forumite Posts: 7,118
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    Very old property with 3ft walls as you may struggle to get a mobile signal  :D
  • Silvertabby
    Silvertabby Forumite Posts: 8,580
    Seventh Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    Before we started house hunting we made 3 lists:

    Must have

    Must not have

    Possible compromise.

    When looking at house adverts in the Estate Agents we didn't waste our time or theirs by viewing properties that fell foul of the first two lists.

    Your lists may be very different from ours - horses for courses - but our 'must have' list included a utility room, and a decent sized garden.  Our 'must not' list included a downstairs loo right next to the front door and stairs leading from the living space.  Downstairs loos leading directly off the living spaces weren't a thing back then - but that would have gone straight to the top of the 'must not have' list!
  • Niv
    Niv Forumite Posts: 2,442
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    If you took all these suggestions you would struggle to find a house. It is about compromise, I think red lines need to be a seriously thought about. Perfect house but it has a tree in the back garden so you pass... what?!

    Target: Mortgage free by 58.
  • Bobinyorkshire
    Bobinyorkshire Forumite Posts: 112
    Second Anniversary 10 Posts
    We have a north facing garden and would look for a house with another should we move. It provided shade when the children were playing, means the conservatory can be used all year (easy to heat as well insulated and solid roof) and has somewhere to enjoy a cuppa out of the sun between gardening tasks. Any moss on the lawn is treated and removed each year and the patio is no more slippy than the drive at the front. We have had south facing before and found them too hot at times, especially if working in them. Just my opinion 😀
  • YoungBlueEyes
    YoungBlueEyes Forumite Posts: 3,239
    Eighth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Homepage Hero Photogenic
    When we were house hunting I made a list in 3 sections - need, want, no no.

    Need - drive for parking on, 3 beds, quiet road, walking distance to shops etc, near a train station, within so many miles of himself's work.
    Want - decent sized garden facing E/SE, garage, a lounge diner, utility room, properly big bedrooms + bathroom, separate little downstairs loo. 
    No no - Nothing sold by Modern Method of Auction, no shared driveway, nothing with major structural work needed, not next to an HMO.

    We compromised on the wants to get all needs and avoid all no-nos. Now that I think about it, this house isn't any of the wants - but needs and no-nos covered.

    It's all about what you'll find acceptable out of what's available for your budget.
    Right, and what are you going to do about it?
  • Jonboy_1984
    Jonboy_1984 Forumite Posts: 896
    Ninth Anniversary 500 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    For me when moving from first flat to house it was about making sure we were freehold, on an adopted road and not subject to any costs under others control (service/maintenance charges etc) or covenants requiring permission from private entities.

    If we had drawn up a list such as yours we would have dismissed a few houses that could have worked nicely for us when discussing them afterwards (often by features not apparent from the EA listing), so be clear about what you want but don’t be afraid to view more widely.

  • FreeBear
    FreeBear Forumite Posts: 12,955
    Eighth Anniversary 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    edited 19 January at 11:20AM
    A conservatory without any exterior grade doors to separate it from the rest of the house. Huge expanses of glass elsewhere in the property  Would be a major source of heat loss and add to the heating bills.

    Her courage will change the world.

    Treasure the moments that you have. Savour them for as long as you can for they will never come back again.
  • Vannaa
    Vannaa Forumite Posts: 32
    10 Posts
    Interesting to see other people's must haves / red flags. Looking to buy this year and move out of rented and my list was originally a lot longer than this -

    Must have
    4 beds - three doubles, two big enough for desks; garden; two toilets; off street parking; decent broadband (at least 100mb)

    Must not have
    Anything that needs a lot of work, I want to just move in and live there; terraced; carpets downstairs; lot of steps to front door

    Possible compromise.
    One toilet if there is space to add one; off street parking if there is parking outside and not on a main road; carpets can be removed

    This all for my liveability, I have no plans to move in the future.
  • gwynlas
    gwynlas Forumite Posts: 1,423
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    edited 19 January at 2:21PM
    Lists need to reflect what available housing stock consists of in area. Terraced housing predominates in some areas and originally built with outside toilets so ground floor bathroom extensions are the norm as otherwise you sacrifice a bedroom. Similarly gas and mains drainage. You can make a list of what you hope to achieve on personal budget and then rule things in and out around that.
  • Emily_Joy
    Emily_Joy Forumite Posts: 899
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Posts Name Dropper
    edited 19 January at 2:59PM
    I would like again to thank everyone for their inputs. Price is not really that much of a concern. I am a bit puzzled at the moment by Estate Agents behavior, which seems a bit "pushy" to me. We started house hunting in November and have seen some 8 houses so far. We are now being told
    (1) if we keep searching, we will not buy anything.
    (2) they are not going to show us a house unless we can prove that we have a mortgage in principle for the full asking price (the house  in question is on the market since summer)
    (3) we should make a decision whether to make an offer or not within a couple of hours of the first viewing. 
    Is this normal nowadays?
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