Owning your own home

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  • The bigger problem in Dublin is the lack of supply. Construction pretty much stopped in 2008 and hasn't really recovered since. The wages are a little lower in Dublin too.

    As a city, its not equipped for a growth spurt in population, and the infrastructure doesn't support commuting from the suburbs, there is a seriously limited train network.

    That said, it's a cracking city.

  • I have to say I think the break in construction is a very good thing for Dublin (most of the new buildings are anodyne and characterless, just as in London), although I do realise it's contributing to causing sprawl. I was in Wicklow last year to visit a friend and one day took the bus into the city (well, to Blackrock and walked from there), from further out than Greystones, and it was very interesting to see how badly it was all developing.

    Unfortunately, before a city has made the same mistakes that London made, it's usually impossible to get politicians to realise why those mistakes shouldn't be made. It's obviously a matter of national-level legislation rather than at the local or regional level, but that doesn't seem to be taken care of.

    What I found interesting were some very run-down parts right in the centre of Dublin, with empty houses and the like. The problem is that we have lost the mechanisms of gentle modernisation that used to happen fairly automatically and have gone for concentrated development on large plot sizes as the way forward, which Dublin is currently largely spared, fortunately.

    As for commuting from the suburbs, it should really finally be grasped by politics that you don't want to follow the London model but that you want to create a well-balanced network of centres throughout the city, with good mixed use, i.e. jobs, education, commerce, nightlife, etc. Over-centralisation is bad and (especially in this day and age, with modern communications technology) unnecessary.

    And yes, the trains seemed superannuated. We took the DART a couple of times.

  • Going through your list:

    1. You.
    2. Pro.
    3. You
    4. Pro, your buildings insurance would be voided if something went wrong and they found out. Plus you don't want to risk your/your families lives.
    5. Board it out yourself and then get a spread in to do the skim.
    6. You fit the cabinets then get a pro to fit worktop.
    7. Lots of bits you can easily do yourself.
    8. You.

    I'm happy to give you advice on pretty much anything. Depending on where the flat is I may even be able to recommend people to you.

    The order will depend on your priorities sit down and make a list of what needs doing in what order, if you are buying with a significant other do it separately then compare notes and form a joint strategy. Assuming that as you say cash is in short supply you will be living there when work is ongoing I would therefore strongly advise doing one room at a time and try to do it so you do one big job room, say kitchen or bathroom, then one room that requires less work i.e lick of paint in the hallway or a bedroom. This way you will feel you are making progress quicker than you would if you doing the big jobs one after the other. Obviously splitting into rooms goes out the window if you have to take on house wide work like re-wiring.

    Good luck and I hope you get it.

  • Any reputable Sparx will be happy to do a survey of what you have and how it can be improved. A surveyor should spot anything dangerous.

  • T tree oil diluted in water is the best thing I've found. Put it in a spray bottle hose the black shit down and scrub.

    This article is good.

  • On the damp mold topic.

    Used the HG stuff myself, strong chlorine smell that goes after a few hours, does the job.

    Current house came with a large.... like a free standing stereo speaker Dehumidifyer, but maybe a 20 year old unit.
    Last resident said we would need it. Googled the thing, in it's day it was top end. Only does 10.5 ltrs per 24 hours, quieter than the fridge to run. Test ran it after cleaning the catch tank and filters, six hours saw 750ml so it works and house ain't too bad.
    Windows condense badly overnight now it's colder.

  • Thanks. Mrs cyoa has a ton of that stuff. Will put it to good use.

  • Thank you! Sort of the confidence boost / reality check I needed. The list recommendation was a good idea - fortunately we agreed.

    Low ball offer has been accepted, pending Surveyor telling us we are out of our minds, I will be in need of recommendations for Bromley area trades-folk.

  • Can recommend Adam @ evolution plumbing for your boiler moving needs (he moved ours). Not far from future-you.

  • excellent, thank you

  • We're just going through similar Orpington/Bromley way so happy to trade recommendations of people who we've dealt with!

  • Dear hive mind,

    The wall which ruined the layout of our downstairs has gone, as has the chimney breast which made this a mammoth task.

    We would like the back bit (concrete floor) to be our tiled kitchen, and where that ends to be where our pine floorboards start.

    This means somehow filling a gap which used to be a wall and a chimney breast and a hearth with floorboards, somehow. There are no joists underneath.

    Is this doable? How would it be done? Sourcing the floorboards should be okay, but what would they attach to?


    2 Attachments

    • 20191203_193717.jpg
    • 20191203_193725.jpg
  • Extend joists, add brick piers to support as required?

  • Sky hooks.

  • Row of acrow's, paint them a jolly colour.

  • That sounds like it would involve a lot of digging and a lot of building - and I assumed the wall was built on top of some kind of foundations. Could the floorboards not be laid on top of that somehow?

  • You need to clear of the debris under what was the wall and hearth to assess.

    Could be that you can reduce the height of the hard standing and batten onto it at the same height as the joists holding up the wood floor. This will then support your new floorboards.

    Whatever happens you will have a height difference between the kitchen and the floor that will need some kind of reducer bar.

  • It's a bit hard to see exactly what is there in the pictures but it looks like you have a hearth still in place, which is level with the floorboards?

    I don't see how you can avoid breaking that out if you want to keep the same levels.

  • Definitely going to take you up in that offer if we proceed post survey - thank you

  • Needs an inverse shim

  • Now I'm starting to get my head around things, does any one have any good literature recommendations for learning a but more about basic tradesman's skills? Anything like a haynes manual for doing the bits that won't end in death?

    ...aside from the slightly dubiously titled 'Haynes Women's DIY'...?

  • Collins complete DIY manual is my go-to. It is quite complete for all basic things, maybe not so for modern electronics and domotics, but for electricity, carpentry, tiling, painting etc it's a perfect starting point

  • Had a party wall notice issued from my new (as yet un-met) neighbours. Loft conversion and side return extension, but the latter is on the opposite side to me.

    Been given three (presumbaly standard) ways to respond:

    1. Consent
    2. Dissent and agree for their architect to be the joint surveyor
    3. Dissent and appoint my own surveyor

    I've absolutely no objections to the work being done, but would it still make sense to go with option 2? This guarantees that a schedule of condition on my place will happen, even though it's by their surveyor.

    Since I'm a leaseholder, from what I've read the freeholder (company rather than individual) is very unlikely to consent and will insist on using their own surveyor. Is there any point in contacting the freeholder before responding to find out if that's the case?

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Owning your own home

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