GRRRR Homebuying!

Sooo… it turns out the last post was a bit premature… The exchange on our house didn’t go through as planned and we’re now left waiting for it to be re-arranged.

People say buying a house is the second most stressful thing you’ll ever do in your life. In fact it ranks only after a bereavment. So it’s safe to say it’s pretty stressful. But even with all the pitfalls we’ve faced, the frantic phonecalls and the wrong information we’ve received this hasn’t been all that stressful. Annoying, yes, but stressful, not really.

I think this probably shows an ambivalence towards our future home, that I couldn’t care less at this point if it all fell through, but hopefully that’s not the case and by choosing not to be annoyed by everything it’s meant we’re not entirely put off buying property ever again (although others have said they would be put off, if they’d gone through what we have!)

This has all added up to mean that we put an offer in on January 2nd and still haven’t exchanged. But this delay has meant we’ve been able to save more, and will mean we can actually do more to the house than we’d anticipated.

In honour of all the things we’ve come up against I thought I’d list them, for posterity, and it’s made me realise that on paper they really do look like tiny issues, no matter how insurmountable they felt at the time.

So here’s to all the the things that should have put us off but didn’t, the money we didn’t think we’d find, the AWOL people we cajouled back to sort things out, and all the barriers to buying this flat that we’ve punched, kicked and physically thrown out of our way. By the end of next week we’ll be in. I swear.

Here’s a list of the things that should have put us off the flat but didnt:

  1. The flat has a grey bathroom. GREY.
  2. The tenants have a cat (I am highly allergic)
  3. The windows of the flat are smaller than the windows in our current flat which is in the same complex (WHY?!)
  4. The lease needs to be extended.
  5. The flat is, as the surveyor said, ‘very small, just very small, i mean it’s just SO TINY’ (I wish I’d just told him that i’m only 5’1 so I think that’s sizest!)

[SPOILER: All of these things should have put us off, but didn’t.]

Here’s a list of the things that have gone wrong so far:

  1. The seller took a month to actually acknowledge our offer.
  2. The freeholder went AWOL and couldn’t be contacted about the lease extension.
  3. The lease extension would cost £10,000!
  4. Once acknowledging our offer the seller backed out of extending the lease (which she’d originally said she’d do).
  5. We had our offer accepted but then had to renogotiate as we realised we didn’t have £10k for the lease.
  6. None of the forms we sent the mortgage company were good enough (despite being what they asked for).
  7. The flat was valued lower than what we’re paying for it (due to it being ‘just. so. small.’)
  8. The flat’s electrics hadn’t been checked since before I was born…
  9. The people who need to agree the lease extension take whole epochs to reply to emails.
  10. Our solicitor likes to go AWOL on the days we’re meant to exchange.
  11. The share of freehold we were promised with the lease extension doesn’t exist.
  12. The amount of money we’ll have spent on extra legal costs and making up the difference between the value of the property and what it’s valued at will mean we could have bought a whole house worth nearly 70k more, for the same money we’re spending.
  13. We didn’t exchange on time, or the day after, or the day after that. For no reason.




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