Buying: house or flat?
The year we spent living in a flat was awful. I’d rather live in a ditch to be honest. No way on earth would I buy one. No outside space, too many neighbours making too much noise, everything has to come upstairs, and because of the small dimensions I had to walk sideways everywhere. Just horrid.Posted 3 years ago
Do you want a shed?
My middle name is Arthur Jackson 😉
2-bed flats in SE London (Crystal Palace, Dulwich etc are on the market for £350-400k) although IMO this is unsustainably high as few first time buyers (who buy that kind of place) have that kind of money, so it may well change…
A 2-bed terrace in Bromley is on the market for £350k or less. Cheaper if you’re happy with a downstairs bathroom.
On the face of it, the house is a far better bet but I find Bromley really boring…Posted 3 years ago
Depends on where in London you mean but I’d prefer to have something bigger further out; why Bromley though? Thoughts are that London prices will be falling back a bit in the short-term, SE will do better but generally best to buy a place you like not what you think will do best price-wise as so hard to judge.Posted 3 years agomossimusMember
As far as quicker commute does Bromley not have a fast train? Would have thought commute was quicker form Bromley than CP/Dulwich. I lived in Gypsy hill for a while and commuting by public transport was long winded with lots of changes. Guess it depends where you are commuting to?
Also I would have though Dulwich and CP to have a bit of a price divide?Posted 3 years agocookeaaSubscriber
Well from the sounds of it London Flat obviously…
Here’s how it will go down obtain flat in “up-coming” area of undisputed the centre of the universe..
After a couple of years you should pick yourself up a haughty missus with parents in Bucks, probably called Romilly or Verity, she’ll be in PR or advertising (they normally are)…
The pair of you can ride the london shoe box escalator for a few years, during which you’ll take a long weekend or two in the west country decide you fancy displacing some locals, and get the shoe box valued at ~£6Trillion, then this Pair will help you spend your ill gotten gains:
Then Verity can raise your horrific sprats somewhere near bude, while you end up with a commuter flat in Bromley, where you’ll probably spend your evenings Monday to Thursday knocking of that girl in HR…
Hooray for the out of kilter South-East housing market…Posted 3 years ago
Hooray for the out of kilter South-East housing market…
. don’t remind me – 3 years ago, £250k would have been enough to make the choice I’m trying to make. I’m struggling to know where people are finding the cash tbh, given even Tesco’s struggling 😯
is it just Bromley
My geographical limiting factor is that the Stiffback Roadie club run starts at 8:30 from Crystal Palace on Sundays. Summer that means a 6:30 alarm, which is going to be ‘fun’ come winter!
Carshalton is the other option which could work but I suspect Bromley’s the better area overall…Posted 3 years agocookeaaSubscriber
I’d suspect that commuter belt is the more sensible option longer term, London is due a bit of a crash, the prices are unsustainable, where as a bit more space a bit further out will always find a market and you might find you want more space than a flat will give you…
Also do you have to keep riding with the same club? There are others you know…Posted 3 years agostevepitchMember
And £350k isn’t silly for a 2 bed house 😯
Was going to suggest some far fetched option to live further out near rad gnar territory for cheaper house and weekend sports car then commute in by train but it may not be too your taste.
***I’ve just realised this post is of no use what so ever 🙂Posted 3 years agojambalayaSubscriber
@brooess – hard to generalise. Based on what you’ve said I would go for the flat. Easier to buy/sell and I don’t agree with your un-sustainably high comment. London prices are still lower than the peak adjusted for inflation. First time buyers don’t drive the market, and buy-to-let / investment flows are much more important. I think central London will continue to outperform.
Personally I find Carshalton a bit of nothing, its not London and it’s not the countryside either. Hence I agree with your Bromley preference. Also I like Dulwich, nearly bought there myself way back but we decided to stay out in Guildford. I’m currently in central London renting, its great to have a short commute (Boris Bike) and I save £550 a month on train/car park.Posted 3 years ago
Assuming prices stop being silly I’ll be buying some at point next year and the main decision is whether to buy a 2-bed flat in London or a 2-bed terraced house in Bromley.
Main points to consider:
1. I’d prefer to live in London for many reasons – shorter and cheaper commute, closer in for shopping and museums, gigs etc, easier to get up on Sunday mornings for the stiffback roadie club ride and just because… it’s London
2. Bromley is boring suburban commuter-ville with a long commute but it’s quieter, you can get way more for your money, a garden is better for cleaning and maintaining bikes, house means more storage space (great for bikes) and no leasehold hassles. Also easier to drive down to Surrey Hills for MTB.
3. A flat will come with additional charges for service charge and at current pricing is £30-70k more expensive than a house…
Heart says flat in London, head says house in Bromley…Posted 3 years ago
Anything else to throw into the mix?poolmanMember
No teddington is more than kingston where a decent 2 bed flat is now 400k
Ok there are cheaper 2 bedders but they are not central or have 2 bathrooms.
3 bed houses are c 550. I looked at sutton carshalton and bromley
Before kingston – you get what you pay for.
I would focus on solid areas so if a bust happens you are protected.Posted 3 years agoMrSalmonMember
Flats are a royal PITA with bikes IME, for the reasons that PeterPoddy mentioned. Personally I’d still take one over a ditch though!
Been in a flat for the last 2 years and the lack of own outside space is really bothering me this summer.
All that stuff is a different discussion to the economics/potential profitability stuff though.Posted 3 years ago
I apologise my knowledge of the market seems out of date however a 2 bedroom cottage is do-able for 350-400 in Molesey/Hampton or Walton according to my wife who works in that business.
like thisPosted 3 years agofingerbikeMember
Don’t forget service charges in the flat.
This, every so often we get an increase on building management charges, yet never seem to get anything fixed, previous requests for a breakdown of what has actually been done just gets a reply of threat of court if we don’t pay up! Basically we pay a f’load for I don’t know what and get threatened with court if we complain! Tried getting other residents involved to move or go alone but they seem content to just stick head in the sand and pay up. looking into it further, the law even seems to help them have you over a barrel. Never living in a flat again.Posted 3 years agofingerbikeMember
Held meetings to get us freehold, it started well but ultimately went nowhere, a few other residents want to just pay and be left alone, that and the feud it transpired was going on on the ground floor over plant pots in communal gardens meant people refused to speak to each other about it!Posted 3 years ago
Held meetings to get us freehold, it started well but ultimately went nowhere, a few other residents want to just pay and be left alone, that and the feud it transpired was going on on the ground floor over plant pots in communal gardens meant people refused to speak to each other about it!
This kind of crap is partly what makes a house in suburbia more attractive… you can’t choose your neighbours but in a flat situation it can have a massive impact on your personal finances… + I’ve read daft stories where if you take the managing agent to court on unfair charges and win, they can add their legal costs to your future fees! Sounds like an extortion racket to me… at least with a house you have the ability to sort stuff out and you choose how to go about itPosted 3 years agosenor jSubscriber
I got to the age where flat living wasn’t for me, but as an investment the flat was a winner.We had a ground floor garden flat for quite a few years.I kept the bikes indoors until the baby came , then I put a shed in the garden. 😥Posted 3 years ago
We’ve moved to a house now, the bikes are still in a shed but I can’t hear the “drama” students, upstairs, “singing” anymore….. 😀
fwiw I’d always have to see some good in the surrounding area of any property before even dreaming of making an offer.
best of luck.
The year we spent living in a flat was awful. I’d rather live in a ditch to be honest. No way on earth would I buy one. No outside space, too many neighbours making too much noise, everything has to come upstairs, and because of the small dimensions I had to walk sideways everywhere. Just horrid.
There’s flats, and flats. Our place is technically a flat, as it’s converted from a massive Victorian town house, but for a couple with no kids it’s more than enough space. We have a large basement with seperate storage areas, and a communal section where I have a small workshop. 😉 8) We don’t have a garden, although we get on so well with our neighbour blow we could use hers if we really wanted to, but we’re not gardeners, and we have a lovely little roof terrace. In short, it’s perfect for our needs. Quiet, decent area, good shops very close, train 15 mins from central London. All in all, very highly desirable. We could sell here and buy something massive in the outer burbs, but we love lifing here. Sometimes, less is more.Posted 3 years agobatfinkMember
To add some balance (but probably no value) to the debate:
I lived in a flat – it was fine.
I now live in a different flat – it is fine too.
If you are looking at flats, first question needs to be: “HOW LONG IS THE LEASE?”. The leasehold discussion is often filed in the “too difficult” category – and only gets brought-up later. It could cost you a massive amount of money if you buy somewhere with too short a lease.
The cost of a renewal is a factor of the property value, and how long is left on the lease. This is the important bit: the amount that it will cost roughly doubles when you cross the 80 year mark – so beware anywhere with 81 years (or 79.9 years).
To put this in perspective: on a £300,000 place, with 80 years remaining, you could be looking at 9K to renew (you also have to pay a f*ck-ton of legal fees on top of that).
The same place, with 79.9 years left on the lease – could be 17K to renew!
I think mortgage companies start asking questions when there is less than 80 years on the lease – so if you want to sell it, you get lumbered with having to do the renewal.
So – in summary: CHECK HOW LONG IS LEFT ON THE LEASEPosted 3 years ago
Yet just last week you were not happy with your neighbour stoffle ?
That’s the other one. anyway she’s just moody causes she’s got cabin fever and her brat just screams al the time and doesn’t sleep. She’s ok anyway really.
Sounds like Pterpoddy lived in a shoe box. We don’t. We have pretty much as much space as a standard 2up 2 doen terrace, without the hassle of a garden. Plus we enjoy as much basement space as would a terrce. And we have a good bit more room than any cramped shitty new build. Being freehold means there’s a lot less hassle if we want to do anything. Being off ground level means burlgalry is much less likely, and insurance is a lot lower as a reslt. As I said; there’s flats and theres flats. Location is key though; we’re very lucky to live in a nice area, with decent transport links and excelent local amenities. It suits our lifestlye perfectly, and we don’t have to suffer long commutes, having to rush to get the last tran, having to drive everywhere etc. I appreciate urban living’s not for everyone, but There is an option to havin to have a ‘house’.Posted 3 years agotrail_ratMember
Gardens a hassle???
I loves my garden i really do, nothing beats it for stress relief 🙂
Horses for courses really but i do enjoy a good bbq or breakfast out on the grass.
Fwiw where i am , a 3 bed house cost the same as a 2 bed 3rd floor flat on the edge of town so it was only sensible for me , in london at the prices the op is quoting….not so.Posted 3 years ago
Gardens a hassle???
Weeds mowing planting pruningngreenfly foxes cat shit slugs snails hayfever fences falling down party wall agreements overhanging foilage waterlogging drought etc etc etc. Yes, they’re hassle. Did Imention we’re not gardners? 😀
Our roof terrace is big enough for a few planters and pots, BBq, to put the washing out, have a sun lounger or two, and is a real sun trap. Plus being up higher, we get to enjoy the visual impact of all our neighbours’ gardens. And I have my workshop (fully equipped for woodworking, bikes etc) to potter about in and chill out (it’s technically a ‘communal’ section, but no-one else ever uses it). Our storage area has enough space for several bikes (6 at the moment but space for at least 2 or 3 more), and is more secure than a shed or garage. So we enjoy pretty much most of the benefits of a house, with very few if any ‘downsides’. The OP cold miss out on a great home if they were to totally discount ‘flats’ and concentrate only on ‘houses’. Once again; there are flats, and there are flats.
Fwiw where i am , a 3 bed house cost the same as a 2 bed 3rd floor flat on the edge of town so it was only sensible for me , in london at the prices the op is quoting….not so.
There is limited stock in ths particular area of 3 bedders, as most places are either massive 5-6+ bedders, or 1-2 bed flats converteed. For a whole ‘house’, you’d need upwards of £800,000, more likely over £1million. 😯Posted 3 years ago
The topic ‘Buying: house or flat?’ is closed to new replies.