Owning your own home

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  • I agree that E10, 11 and 17 prices seem to be plucked out of the air at times.

    But with those houses, and I'm not saying it's 100K difference but the cheaper one has the master bathroom off the kitchen downstairs which is a big negative for many, plus the more expensive one has a better designed/bigger kitchen extension and looks like a higher end loft conversion. Plus the cheaper one looks like it's an end plot with smaller garden that has a house potentially blocking light.

  • I moved out of London 15 years ago. NW born and bred rather than E.

  • london pricing is a trip. just looked at what I can get for those prices in a very exclusive/bougie neighbourhood round my way - buy myself a pile...

  • Fair enough. I sometimes fantasize about moving north to have land and a whippet.

  • And endless driving rain.

  • Barnet isn't that bad. You and me both @princeperch

  • The Fens are almost, technically, a desert. Mind you it's absolutely pissing down at the moment. Still, saves me from having to water the garden. Again.

    P.S. NW as in NW11/6/3. Not The North.

  • Any recommended North London Party Wall Surveyor?

    Also... recommendations for sash window repair / renovation sought in both North and South London.

    I have:

  • Just finished reading through about 50 pages of this thread as we've now entered the madhouse ourselves: Put house on market at the weekend; first viewing last night; same viewer wants second look this morning.
    Haven't moved in 11 years and had forgotten how relentlessly stressful it is.
    It's compounded by the fact that we don't want to move as we love our house, we've got it just how we want it and both kids were born in the kitchen so there's a strong emotional attachment.
    We love living in Peckham too.
    However we can't guarantee our eldest (year 5) will get into what we consider a decent school so we're seizing this moment to sell up.
    We can't decide where to move to either.
    We like a school in Twickenham but houses are crazy prices there and are smaller than ours. We'd have to max out our budget leaving us with nothing to spend on the house itself for a while. On the plus side though, most have been done up to a decent standard.
    We're also considering Sutton/Cheam area for schools. We can get a cheaper and bigger place but the area's a bit dull compared to Peckham and the decor of the houses there are generally a bit shit.

  • I've used this guy a few times https://sites.google.com/view/north-lond­on-surveyor/home

    Very old school but he seemed decent. Fees were reasonable and he was happy to chat through things on the phone (I also called him about doing a rebuild valuation for the insurance and he said that as he already had the details from the party wall work he'd give me a quick estimate for free which was nice of him.)

    For my sashes (6 new ones with extensive frame work and 4 renovations) I used your first link http://www.sashrepairs.co.uk He was very good, had a real passion for sash windows and was very exacting but that did make him not the fastest. I didn't really care as I was out at work and he was set up in the spare room so it was minimal inconvenience for me and the fee stayed the same.

    He's a one man band which may explain the poor comms although I don't remember it being particularly bad. I have a mobile number if you want it.

    The other North London one that is well recommended in your area are http://www.acornsashwindows.co.uk/ I got them in to quote but didn't use them in the end. They seem to have a good reputation though.

  • Watch out for loft conversions. Our neighbours had a side return done with rooflights at the same time as we had our loft done. As both neared completion we realised we can look right down into their kitchen.

  • we can look right down into their kitchen

    I’ve often heard people talk about this but how much of an issue is it in practice? Often the window looking into the side return is a bathroom anyway so probably frosted?

  • we can look right down into their kitchen

    This happened to 'a friend of mine' as 10-12 year old and most mornings he was treated to his neighbour washing up or ironing in the nood.

  • If you don't mind me asking, what are the dimensions of the room? We are thinking of a side return extension but I find it hard to visualise the space we will get

  • My buyers solicitor has come back and asked about electrics and boiler testing.

    Whats the general consensus in this stuff?

  • I got my buyers a fresh boiler service certificate. I probably could have argued the toss and not done so but I felt that it is sort of implied that these things work unless you state otherwise, so I didn’t want to be a dick about it.

    However, I was throwing in the white goods ‘for free’ so I was not inclined to get the bottom oven repaired (which I hadn’t used for years)

  • Re electrics my flat had an old consumer unit w/ wire fuses not circuit breakers - I pointed this out to the buyer and said I would rather not get it tested and possibly condemned - luckily they understood

  • It's normally a bedroom window I'd say. When I was looking I saw quite a few houses with loft conversions that looked right into the side return extension with big skylights.

  • My buyer asked for a boiler service and certificate. I said no and it was never mentioned again. (My main issue was that getting to the boiler requires taking a cupboard off the wall and I couldn't be arsed with that.)

  • You should have an annual gas safety cert anyway right?

    As a buyer, if I didn't see something I'd assume a major issue. i.e. is the flue serviceable? Does the boiler carry a huge "Do not use" sticker from a prior inspection?

    If one wasn't supplied routinely, or couldn't be supplied... I'd have questions and would consider pulling out. A boiler test at least is like a change of oil or MOT for a car - why don't you have one?

    The electrics... frankly, the buyer should've glanced at a fuse box when they visited, or could say "please take a photo at minimum"... just a sanity check. A full test would've revealed the cluster-fuck that is my kitchen, but full electrics testing is not a routine thing and I wouldn't expect one to be done, just a sanity check on the consumer unit for an estimation of the last time someone may have done major work to the electrics and an assumption that there is a skeleton somewhere but at least it's a small one.

  • In our case, it's clear french doors and Juliet balcony in the dormer of the loft conversion and pretty hard to avoid when looking into (our own) garden.

    They are getting their loft done right now and we are doing the side, so we should soon be even in terms of accidental exposure.

  • those wire fuses are a minor ballache - we had one of those units when we moved in. not sure what age it was - looked original (1930s). when our electrician came as part of our building work, he refused to certify his electrics without replacing the consumer unit (which we were ofc very happy to do)

  • You should have an annual gas safety cert anyway right?

    If the property is being rented. There's no requirement for your own home (and no guarantee you'd get one with a service unless you chose an engineer who did provide them). I suspect the vast majority don't have an annual service.

  • Hah, and there was me just routinely getting it done because it's only a small cost to catch problems early.

    BTW, thanks for the tips earlier.

  • As both neared completion we realised we can look right down into their kitchen.

    This is why I need a party wall surveyor, next door are extending their kitchen and it requires new foundations close to my building.

    Hilarious thing though, these huge sky light windows they've got in the plans will absolutely grant me full visibility of half their kitchen when I'm sat at my dining table on the first floor.

    I feel for my downstairs neighbour... I'm having the kitchen done, next door are extending their building for a larger kitchen, and next door the other way have just sold with planning permission for an extension... they may well have works in all 3 directions for 1-6 months whilst they work from home.

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Owning your own home

Posted by Avatar for Hobo @Hobo