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    • FTB2018
    • By FTB2018 14th May 18, 12:26 PM
    • 2Posts
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    FTB2018
    Renegotiating after survey
    • #1
    • 14th May 18, 12:26 PM
    Renegotiating after survey 14th May 18 at 12:26 PM
    My husband and I are first time buyers. We put in an offer on a 2 bed leasehold flat in London for 5k over the asking price (got roped into a bidding war and still have my doubts of wether they actually existed). The place was tenanted, filled with furniture and everything seemed to be in good order. I went to view the flat the day before the survey so that they could have easy access to loft. The tenants have now left. There is a lot of damp, particularly where the furniture has been. The plaster has bubbled and there is black mould in 4 of the rooms. They had curtains covering the windows, and now that they are gone you can see the windows need replacing and the wooden window frames are rotten (survey confirms this and deems them not safe). I assume the damp is caused by condensation due to never opening the windows! we are waiting to hear back from the solicitor about what our responsibilities are as leaseholders. The survey has valued the property at what we have offered.

    I am a bit annoyed as I would not have offered over the asking price if these were evident. We are lucky to get help from our parents in terms of mortgage and worried the sellers will see us as a bottomless money pit, which is not the case.

    I wanted to get a better understanding of what would be reasonable grounds for us to renegotiate. There are other issues such as exterior walls needing rendering, the porch frame is rotten, the loft is homing birds, does not have insulation or sufficient ventilation, and polystyrene tiles on the bathroom ceiling which is a fire hazard according to the survey. I am aware the survey is not a checklist of things to be done and some of the work is more likely to do with the freeholder. My main concerns are the windows, and the plastering work that is now required.
Page 1
    • Aylesbury Duck
    • By Aylesbury Duck 14th May 18, 12:32 PM
    • 2,402 Posts
    • 3,185 Thanks
    Aylesbury Duck
    • #2
    • 14th May 18, 12:32 PM
    • #2
    • 14th May 18, 12:32 PM
    It may have been priced with those problems in mind. All you can do is withdraw your offer and submit a newer one, citing the problems, and see what the sellers think. If the other party does exist, they will probably reject your offer and go back to them to see if they're still interest. If they don't they'll either accept your revised offer or be peeved and not deal with you again.

    If you already think you over-offered and now you have all these things to address, isn't now the time to walk away anyway?
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 14th May 18, 12:33 PM
    • 982 Posts
    • 1,189 Thanks
    need an answer
    • #3
    • 14th May 18, 12:33 PM
    • #3
    • 14th May 18, 12:33 PM
    Your main stumbling block on any negotiations is going to be that the valuation given by the surveyor is in line with the current market value and matches the offer you have made.

    Any seller is likely to agree that work may be necessary but probably wont allow a discount on price as you are paying what a surveyor has deemed current market value

    you say you are a bit annoyed that had you noticed the problems when viewing you wouldn't have offered the price you did,fact being on the other edge of the coin the vendor probably wouldnt have accepted your offer either.

    Something else to consider is the communal and exterior areas,if they too are in a bad or worrying state of repair they will need addressing at some point,and whilst these wont be solely your responsibility you will as a leasholder be expected to pay the portion as detailed in your lease for work to be carried out.

    Is there a sinking fund in place for such repairs that the management company have monitored or will they be treated as one off repairs with the cost being passed back to leaseholders,certainly questions which you now need to have some understanding of the answers going forward
    Last edited by need an answer; 14-05-2018 at 12:39 PM.
    in S 40 T 64 F 61
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    2017 -32
    • FTB2018
    • By FTB2018 14th May 18, 12:52 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    FTB2018
    • #4
    • 14th May 18, 12:52 PM
    • #4
    • 14th May 18, 12:52 PM
    Thanks, we're waiting to hear back from our solicitor re: sinking fund. Before the other bidder came along and put in the asking price, we were told by the estate agent the seller was willing to accept 5k below. The seller gave the estate agent permission to divulge the other bid to us. Im now thinking it wouldn't be unreasonable to offer the original asking price, and that would help us cover some of the repair costs. Will just have to wait and see what our solicitor finds out in regards to the other repairs.
    • westernpromise
    • By westernpromise 14th May 18, 1:07 PM
    • 4,263 Posts
    • 5,548 Thanks
    westernpromise
    • #5
    • 14th May 18, 1:07 PM
    • #5
    • 14th May 18, 1:07 PM
    That sounds like an expensive list. To be frank I'd walk away.

    We are in a house that is basically a money pit because tight-fisted dirty people lived in it before we did and they never spent a bean. When we moved in the kitchen smelt funny and when we ripped it out we found dead mice under the units. The scutters who lived there had set mouse traps in the kitchen and eaten amid the smell of rotting dead mice. They didn't care.

    We did over the worst rooms first and when we saw how grotty the others then looked in contrast we ended up having to replace every single thing in every single room from floor to ceiling.

    The windows are alarming. I've been quoted 2,500 per window to replace rotten wooden windows (not the frame, either, just the windows). OK, I'm in a conservation area, but they're not going to be 2,000 a window cheaper if you're not.

    Is the whole place generally grotty? Are the doors those flimsy hollow B & Q ones for 50 that door furniture rips out of because there's hardly any wood for the screws to bite on?

    The fact that the survey says you're paying fair value is neither here nor there. By analogy you could be paying 1,000 for a garden shed, but would you want to live in one, fairly priced or not? You will have to occupy the place and put up with someone's filth and mess until you can afford to have it put right (which is massive upheaval in itself).

    You're an FTB in London where prices are flatlining or coming off - walk away and find somewhere that doesn't need all this fixing. This can't be the only flat you can afford. You are in the driving seat.
    Buying a house, if you believe the market has a way to fall, or if you are paying sill asking prices ( like some sheeple ) or if you are buying in London, is now a massive financial gamble!!!!! - June 8, 2012 by TheCountOfNowhere
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 14th May 18, 1:37 PM
    • 19,152 Posts
    • 17,575 Thanks
    AdrianC
    • #6
    • 14th May 18, 1:37 PM
    • #6
    • 14th May 18, 1:37 PM
    We put in an offer on a 2 bed leasehold flat in London for 5k over the asking price (got roped into a bidding war and still have my doubts of wether they actually existed).
    Originally posted by FTB2018
    It's irrelevant whether they existed or not. You voluntarily offered asking + 5k.


    The place was tenanted, filled with furniture and everything seemed to be in good order. I went to view the flat the day before the survey so that they could have easy access to loft. The tenants have now left. There is a lot of damp, particularly where the furniture has been. The plaster has bubbled and there is black mould in 4 of the rooms. They had curtains covering the windows, and now that they are gone you can see the windows need replacing and the wooden window frames are rotten (survey confirms this and deems them not safe). I assume the damp is caused by condensation due to never opening the windows! we are waiting to hear back from the solicitor about what our responsibilities are as leaseholders.
    That's the problem with viewing fully-furnished, stuffed-with-gear places... Especially tenanted ones.



    The survey has valued the property at what we have offered.
    There y'go, then. Your offer is a fair price for the property in the condition the surveyor found it.


    I am a bit annoyed as I would not have offered over the asking price if these were evident.
    They were. You just didn't look very hard. You didn't even move the curtains out of the way to spot the rotten window frames... The mould from behind furniture will just wash off. You can, I'm sure, live with bubbled plaster, especially if it's behind furniture.


    If the damp was simply due to poor ventilation, then it'll quickly resolve itself with a more considerate occupant.



    We are lucky to get help from our parents in terms of mortgage and worried the sellers will see us as a bottomless money pit, which is not the case.
    Why would they see you as a "bottomless money pit"? All they'll do is hold you to the offer you voluntarily placed.


    I wanted to get a better understanding of what would be reasonable grounds for us to renegotiate.
    You have none.


    There are other issues such as exterior walls needing rendering, the porch frame is rotten, the loft is homing birds, does not have insulation or sufficient ventilation, and polystyrene tiles on the bathroom ceiling which is a fire hazard according to the survey.
    All of which would have been visible to you before offering, as they were to the surveyor.
    • Hoploz
    • By Hoploz 14th May 18, 9:21 PM
    • 3,842 Posts
    • 3,386 Thanks
    Hoploz
    • #7
    • 14th May 18, 9:21 PM
    • #7
    • 14th May 18, 9:21 PM
    The surveyor has reported the detail, but basically to me it sounds like it was always going to be a do-er upper so these sorts of things are not unexpected and will have been reflected in the price. It's a matter of deciding whether you want to do the work and whether you can afford to do so at the agreed price ... And of course whether you could get something better for the same price.

    I'd advise you read the lease carefully and take notice of anything your solicitor reports regarding it, so that you don't find any problematic clauses. I say this because it's easy to just ignore leases if you're inexperienced but it's important not to.
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