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  • FIRST POST
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 7th Jan 20, 10:37 AM
    • 93Posts
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    kazzamunga
    Can't sell 1 bed flat in Eastcote, Middlesex
    • #1
    • 7th Jan 20, 10:37 AM
    Can't sell 1 bed flat in Eastcote, Middlesex 7th Jan 20 at 10:37 AM
    Hi All,

    Writing here in frustration, 5 months into trying to sell our one-bed flat in a desirable estate, fed up with the estate agents' crap advice.

    The flat is on Rightmove, it's the only one on at £305k in Eastcote (can't post link).

    Thoughts welcome.

    We bought it in 2014, and it's been a long and painful process. Basically my mother had some money that she wanted to invest in property, but didn't want to get a mortgage in her name, so I sort of got railroaded into taking on the mortgage, and the idea was that we would split the equity between us.

    Don't even enter into business with your parents, people. Although we originally agreed it was an investment, my parents signed me into a deal that said that all three of us had to agree to sell it. Which ultimately meant that my parents vetoed anything I said. In 2016 the area was literally a named property hotspot in London, and the prices went up astronomically, but my mum didn't want to sell. Eventually, because my boyfriend also wasn't allowed to move in, we moved out of London to rent, while my brother moved into the flat, but I couldn't buy another place because the mortgage was in my name and I couldn't sell, so I'm still renting now.

    Brexit happened amidst all of this, and then my mum unexpectedly got cancer, and long story short, within a year she died from a very rare reaction to the chemo treatment sad. I know I moan about it above, but I miss her a lot and am so annoyed that this situation made our last few years quite difficult and led to a lot of disagreements.

    Obviously with the family reeling from what happened in October 2018, we couldn't think about selling for another while after that, but we all agreed by August 2019 to put it on the market. And since then, like, zilch.

    We chose a crap estate agent who, despite only managing to get one viewing at a time that was supposedly quite busy, did manage to get us an offer from an investor that seemed to be a personal friend of theirs, but then after 8 weeks of our solicitors dealing with them they said they had to change solicitors and start the process again. When we got annoyed about this the estate agents stupidly put the flat back on the market, and then the buyers pulled out. We changed agents, and they've only managed to get us a handful of viewings since November (yeah, I know, it's a quiet time of year, but plenty of other places are selling).

    My mum chose the flat and she was pretty good at choosing places that were desirable. It's in a nice estate, and apparently the 2 beds are selling like hotcakes but no one wants the one beds. It doesn't make sense to me at all - we've already dropped our price and it is substantially (more than 10%) lower than its peak price in 2016, but we keep getting told that we have to cut it more if we want people to even bother coming to view it! It doesn't make sense to me, as it's a nice flat, in a nice area, and surely there are some people who want 1 bed flats and can't afford 2 beds. Surely there is always a market for 1 beds for people who just want to get onto the housing ladder.

    Very very frustrating, sorry for the rant, but some insight from anyone would be great - what the markets are like in your areas, what you know about selling one beds, etc.

    Thanks!

    K
Page 8
    • GDB2222
    • By GDB2222 15th Jan 20, 9:21 AM
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    GDB2222
    I don't understand all the extra work in trying to get this flat to stay in the family. If you are willing to sell the flat to your brother for £286k which you say is a "fair" price why not just sell it on the open market for £286k and then your brother gets to choose his own next flat? I don't understand the emotional attachment to this particular property? Your brother is only ever going to get his share whether it is sold to him or whether it is sold to someone else. This does not benefit your brother in any way apart from not having to move it will just shift a problem flat onto him.
    Originally posted by Cakeguts
    Itís not really a problem flat. They just have to find the right price.
    No reliance should be placed on the above! Absolutely none, do you hear?
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 15th Jan 20, 10:54 AM
    • 93 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    kazzamunga
    I don't understand all the extra work in trying to get this flat to stay in the family. If you are willing to sell the flat to your brother for £286k which you say is a "fair" price why not just sell it on the open market for £286k and then your brother gets to choose his own next flat? I don't understand the emotional attachment to this particular property? Your brother is only ever going to get his share whether it is sold to him or whether it is sold to someone else. This does not benefit your brother in any way apart from not having to move it will just shift a problem flat onto him.
    Originally posted by Cakeguts
    Would happily sell it for £286k. We put it up at £295k, so we'd expect that as an offer. It's not a problem flat, it's definitely a problem time. you seem predisposed to be negative about the flat itself, which I find odd. For my brother, not having to move is a major benefit. Plus, he would gain equity twice, and possibly sell at a better time in the future.
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 15th Jan 20, 11:22 AM
    • 93 Posts
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    kazzamunga
    My view is its Dad who wants to keep the property and potentially as hes a senior member of the group his view carries more weight.

    I totally get emotional attachment,I've well documented on the board over the years that one of my rental properties is exactly that,an emotional attachment an expensive hobby,call it what you like.

    In this situation dad cant support the property on his own,TBH the family never really could support it individually,it always had to be financed collectively for whatever reason it was purchased in the first place.

    It does seem as if the plan now involves shifting the mortgage from one sibling to the more compliant one which again seems to suggest a desire to keep it in the family rather than sell to an unconnected person on the open market..

    If the family are truly willing to accept an offer of around £286k then in some ways a £295k asking price is still too high to generate a lot of interest...maybe they should have bitten the bullet and gone for £290k.

    Playing devils advocate here...but I wonder if the offer came in at £286k from a private buyer if it genuinely would get progressed or in the back of someones mind that's the price that's the price for a family transaction.
    Originally posted by need an answer
    Would happily accept £286k. £290k would be more likely to get offers of £280k, to our minds.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 15th Jan 20, 1:51 PM
    • 8,802 Posts
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    Crashy Time
    What offers have you had so far?
    • Cakeguts
    • By Cakeguts 15th Jan 20, 5:15 PM
    • 6,973 Posts
    • 11,239 Thanks
    Cakeguts
    Would happily accept £286k. £290k would be more likely to get offers of £280k, to our minds.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga

    The point is that the market decides what a flat is worth not you not the estate agent. You can only find out the true value when someone makes an offer. So what you are saying is that if you think the offers will come in at £280k then that is the value. If it was worth more people would offer more. For very desirable properties there can be offers above the asking price.



    Working on the basis that you are saying that you think the value is around £280k why on earth would you offer to sell it to your brother for £286K? This would mean that you are expecting him to overpay by £6k.



    I am not being negative about the flat I am trying to protect your brother from being sold a problem at an inflated price.



    The people who value a property are the people who offer on it. If you put it on at £290k and people like it they will increase their offers to get it. The market decides. If you put it on the market at £290k and the offers come in at £280k then that is all anyone is prepared to pay you for it. That is the value.
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 15th Jan 20, 9:58 PM
    • 93 Posts
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    kazzamunga
    We had an offer that almost went through and then they pulled out after 2 months. That was £290k and they pulled out in October.



    No that's not what I'm saying, cakeguts. Sigh. Maybe the market works differently in your universe. In mine, you expect people to make an offer about £10k below the asking price. So hey presto, that's how I reached my figure. If I was going to go by the actual offer we had a couple of months ago, I'd ask him to pay £290k - but I suppose you'll come up with some reason why that's outrageous too.


    Yes you're describing how it works when people are actually coming out of the woodwork to buy something. That doesn't seem to be happening for anyone I know at the moment. Not me with a 1 bed flat in London, not my sister with a 2 bed house in Chichester, not my friend with a 3 bed house in Exeter, etc. And they're not all hovels, people just aren't buying. So what you're saying doesn't really apply.
    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 15th Jan 20, 10:42 PM
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    getmore4less
    What's your brother going to tell the lender?

    lender won't be happy with two parties with a beneficial interest

    What are they all going to tell HMRC?

    FTB won't apply and 3% surcharge will apply.
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 15th Jan 20, 11:21 PM
    • 93 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    kazzamunga
    https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-86505251.html


    photos are looking good.
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 15th Jan 20, 11:23 PM
    • 93 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    kazzamunga
    why won't FTB apply if my brother is a FTB and the mortgage would be in his name, so he would be the legal owner? Also, why a 3% surcharge? Everyone I speak to seems to have a different version of what applies. I spoke to a solicitor friend today and even he said it's a big grey area.
    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 16th Jan 20, 12:43 AM
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    getmore4less
    why won't FTB apply if my brother is a FTB and the mortgage would be in his name, so he would be the legal owner? Also, why a 3% surcharge? Everyone I speak to seems to have a different version of what applies. I spoke to a solicitor friend today and even he said it's a big grey area.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    SDLT is not based on legal owners.

    Everyone buying the house has to be FTB to qualify.

    The relative is clearly buying into the house and if they have another house the 3% surcharge will apply.


    What's he going to tell the lender, there are two other owners or its a gift.

    What did you tell your lender when your mum bought 1/2 the flat?
    Last edited by getmore4less; 16-01-2020 at 12:48 AM.
    • Lover of Lycra
    • By Lover of Lycra 16th Jan 20, 1:32 AM
    • 860 Posts
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    Lover of Lycra
    why won't FTB apply if my brother is a FTB and the mortgage would be in his name, so he would be the legal owner? Also, why a 3% surcharge? Everyone I speak to seems to have a different version of what applies. I spoke to a solicitor friend today and even he said it's a big grey area.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    Find a better solicitor then because it's not a big grey area or even a little one. The SDLT rules are crystal clear on this. SDLT is based on beneficial ownership not legal ownership.
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 16th Jan 20, 6:28 AM
    • 16,497 Posts
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    AnotherJoe
    No that's not what I'm saying, cakeguts. Sigh. Maybe the market works differently in your universe. In mine, you expect people to make an offer about £10k below the asking price. So hey presto, that's how I reached my figure. If I was going to go by the actual offer we had a couple of months ago, I'd ask him to pay £290k - but I suppose you'll come up with some reason why that's outrageous too.
    .
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    That makes no sense. It means someone could come up with an arbitrary / unrealistic AP and get it simply by adding £10k to it first.
    In my and I suspect CGs universe I'd expect an offer £10k below what was thought of as a fair / market price for that property by the buyer. And neither what the seller regards as the market price nor the prospective buyers view, may have any relationship to the actual market price at all.
    If in Acacia Avenue 3 bed terraces have sold at £150k plus or minus 5% for the past year then it would be reasonable to think £150k is the market price. So if a seller advertised at £200k a buyer would be barking to offer £190k because the AP is unrealistic to start with.
    Please dont criticise my spelling. It's excellent. Its my typing that's bad.
    • kazzamunga
    • By kazzamunga 16th Jan 20, 7:19 AM
    • 93 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    kazzamunga
    Jeez the tone of some of these responses is just unnecessary. Appreciate the info, but that's about it. The market price, whatever whatever. Literally, the bottom has dropped out of the market, we can all see that. Supply and demand, blah blah blah. But I really resent being told over and over again that I'm being unrealistic, when all we have done is put the flat on the market for the price that we were told, and the price that all the other flats on the estate have gone on for. You will see from Rightmove that there are no other flats on the estate below our price. We have reduced the asking price twice, and we are basing our prices on prices that we have seen for the last five years.i don't know how many ways I can explain the situation. I understand what you are saying, but only about two people have said that the market is softer than anticipated, the rest have somehow blamed that on us, and the flat. I think I'm done here, it's pretty depressing to keep reading such negative stuff in an already negative situation. Thanks for the info re SDLT, I'll pass on that that's also a no go. Cheers.
    • comeandgo
    • By comeandgo 16th Jan 20, 7:33 AM
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    comeandgo
    Yup, a lot better.
    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 16th Jan 20, 7:59 AM
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    getmore4less
    There is quite a good guide on how property ownerships works.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/private-trusts-of-land/practice-guide-24-private-trusts-of-land


    If brother/dad/relative are to become the new beneficial owners then this is not a straight forward transaction.

    Current beneficial ownership appears to be you&dad as nothing has been formalized to change that to the 3 siblings.

    It is nor clear what % without seeing the original deed that that gave your mother beneficial ownership but lets assume for now it was 50:50

    Lets have a stab at SDLT going with...
    The new proposal is: We sell the flat for 286 to my brother, which is as per the Zoopla estimate. He has a £120k mortgage, my relative and dad put in £120k between them, and the difference is made up by the deposit that my brother would have got back from the flat.
    new position
    £286k Total
    £120k Mortgage
    £120k cash from dad&relative
    £46k virtual deposit from brother.

    3 lots of £46k is £138k making the current mortgage 148k which is more than £130k it started at.

    If we say the mortgage is still £130k(was it interest only or repayment?)
    Then we have the £52k each?

    The real beneficial ownership is £78k each you&dad

    With the change of beneficial owners dad still has £78k that leaves £208k to find

    if you take out £52k that's a gift of £26k to the pot

    £182 left made up of £120k mortgage and £42k extra cash from dad&relative

    which goes
    £130 mortgage
    £52k you

    The £52k for the other brother will need to be gifted from dad&relative.

    The selling costs won't be that much knock off few £k

    That looks like consideration for the purchase is £182k once you take off your gift and dads current equity

    SDLT £6,800
    • seradane
    • By seradane 16th Jan 20, 11:24 AM
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    • 47 Thanks
    seradane
    Yes you're describing how it works when people are actually coming out of the woodwork to buy something. That doesn't seem to be happening for anyone I know at the moment. Not me with a 1 bed flat in London, not my sister with a 2 bed house in Chichester, not my friend with a 3 bed house in Exeter, etc. And they're not all hovels, people just aren't buying. So what you're saying doesn't really apply.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    As a FTB who's currently in the process of buying a property in Chichester, can confirm. Things here aren't moving fast - at all. Things that do sell seem to come back on the market quite often. Have watched one property in particular go on and off the market 3 times in the last few months. One property near us dropped its price by about £200k over 6 months before coming off the market (admittedly it was massively overpriced to start with but still..). Other properties we have liked, and seriously considered buying, are still sitting on the market, months later. Or are taken off without being sold. The only things that seem to be selling quickly are lovely properties that are really excellent value.

    As a buyer it's kinda great cause we could take our time & make keen offers but also less great because there's not a huge amount of selection as anyone with a choice in the matter is avoiding selling now.

    So ignore the posters, yes if you were to drop it by 50k I'm sure someone would come out of the woodwork to buy it tomorrow but if you're not desperate to be rid of it just have to have some patience!
    Last edited by seradane; 16-01-2020 at 1:04 PM. Reason: spelling
    • GDB2222
    • By GDB2222 16th Jan 20, 11:52 AM
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    GDB2222
    I suspect that to get a rapid sale in the present market you do need to price the property pretty keenly. We have a property on the market currently, and we have had zero interest.
    No reliance should be placed on the above! Absolutely none, do you hear?
    • RelievedSheff
    • By RelievedSheff 16th Jan 20, 12:59 PM
    • 1,109 Posts
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    RelievedSheff
    We had an offer that almost went through and then they pulled out after 2 months. That was £290k and they pulled out in October.



    No that's not what I'm saying, cakeguts. Sigh. Maybe the market works differently in your universe. In mine, you expect people to make an offer about £10k below the asking price. So hey presto, that's how I reached my figure. If I was going to go by the actual offer we had a couple of months ago, I'd ask him to pay £290k - but I suppose you'll come up with some reason why that's outrageous too.

    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    Perhaps it is your understanding of how the market works that is flawed?

    Has that thought crossed your mind?
    Last edited by RelievedSheff; 16-01-2020 at 1:05 PM.
    • RelievedSheff
    • By RelievedSheff 16th Jan 20, 1:05 PM
    • 1,109 Posts
    • 1,139 Thanks
    RelievedSheff
    Jeez the tone of some of these responses is just unnecessary. Appreciate the info, but that's about it. The market price, whatever whatever. Literally, the bottom has dropped out of the market, we can all see that. Supply and demand, blah blah blah. But I really resent being told over and over again that I'm being unrealistic, when all we have done is put the flat on the market for the price that we were told, and the price that all the other flats on the estate have gone on for. You will see from Rightmove that there are no other flats on the estate below our price. We have reduced the asking price twice, and we are basing our prices on prices that we have seen for the last five years.i don't know how many ways I can explain the situation. I understand what you are saying, but only about two people have said that the market is softer than anticipated, the rest have somehow blamed that on us, and the flat. I think I'm done here, it's pretty depressing to keep reading such negative stuff in an already negative situation. Thanks for the info re SDLT, I'll pass on that that's also a no go. Cheers.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    Just because you are not getting the responses you want it doesn't make them unreasonable.

    It is unfortunate that you have bought a property where prices have fallen and a glut of new builds have made your property less desirable to it's target market. You could not anticipate that when you bought the flat but that is the situation you are in now. There are always winners and losers in the property market.

    People are not being negative with their responses they are being realistic. It doesn't matter what other people in the same estate are asking for their properties, if they are not selling then the asking prices are too high. You need to look at sold data not asking prices.

    To add something positive the new pictures do make the flat present much better and make it look much larger and brighter then the previous ones.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 16th Jan 20, 1:36 PM
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    Crashy Time
    Jeez the tone of some of these responses is just unnecessary. Appreciate the info, but that's about it. The market price, whatever whatever. Literally, the bottom has dropped out of the market, we can all see that. Supply and demand, blah blah blah. But I really resent being told over and over again that I'm being unrealistic, when all we have done is put the flat on the market for the price that we were told, and the price that all the other flats on the estate have gone on for. You will see from Rightmove that there are no other flats on the estate below our price. We have reduced the asking price twice, and we are basing our prices on prices that we have seen for the last five years.i don't know how many ways I can explain the situation. I understand what you are saying, but only about two people have said that the market is softer than anticipated, the rest have somehow blamed that on us, and the flat. I think I'm done here, it's pretty depressing to keep reading such negative stuff in an already negative situation. Thanks for the info re SDLT, I'll pass on that that's also a no go. Cheers.
    Originally posted by kazzamunga
    Go to the "discussion" forum, you will find a few posters there (well a couple) who are still not ready to believe this. This forum used to be property price cheerleading central so if you are feeling a negative tone about your price maybe the market really has changed recently.
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