Viewing a flat, what do I need to look for??

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  • Viewing a flat, what do I need to look for??
  • don simon
    Member

    Noisy neighbours?

    nealglover
    Member

    I would be looking for the other half of the kitchen, and the other half of the bathroom for starters !

    stratobiker
    Member

    You are looking at it in August, a dry month, in the middle of summer!!!

    I’d be looking for evidence of damp, and poor ventilation.

    SB

    CountZero
    Member

    Mouldy areas, noisy neighbours/neighbourhood.

    Weasel
    Member

    Presuming it has a flat roof, details on when it was last (or has been) re-felted.

    When I lived in a flat although the buildings insurance was within the monthly service charge, obviously contents was my responsibility. The contents insurer got funny about the flat roof (when I had to provide proof of the buildings cover) and some places didn’t seem too keen if your were on the top floor. I was on the 1st floor of 2.

    Oh, and a tip…if you not on the ground floor make sure that if you order a large sofa it can get up the stairwell. We had to get an upholsterer to strip it down and them build it back up in the flat. We then sold the sofa with the flat so it’s someone elses problem now.

    sounds like a cut and shut job too me . . .at least you’ll be able to fry up your pre-ride bacon whilst taking a shower at the same time . . think of the time you’ll save?

    ianpinder
    Member

    I’m thinking it will need a new kitchen, bathroom, carpets and full decoration. Contractual wise what should I be looking for?

    Premier Icon wallop
    Subscriber

    If it’s a flat, I guess it’s leasehold – you need details of ground rent/annual charges.

    What floor is it on?

    ianpinder
    Member

    I’m thinking it will need a new kitchen, bathroom, carpets and full decoration. Contractual wise what should I be looking for?

    ianpinder
    Member

    Top floor

    Ewan
    Member

    Contractually the only thing that is important is how much is the service charge + ground rent, is it scheduled to increase (e.g. a lot double after 25 years), and how long does the lease have left. If it’s less than 70 years don’t bother.

    Otherwise look for mould (or evidenacne of recently painted over mould) and open the windows and see how loud everything is.

    enveetee
    Member

    Noisy neighbours?

    …this is the ONE thing you cannot fix

    Be warned.

    sobriety
    Member

    If any of the flats around you are rented, you may end up with noisy neighbours anyways, my sister is currently suffering from this 🙁

    don simon
    Member

    …this is the ONE thing you cannot fix

    Contact not signed yet, of course it can be fixed. Buy another one.

    spooky_b329
    Member

    Check there is no major maintenance due for the building as a whole, i.e repointing/new windows etc etc, could cost you a packet and you will have no choice. Remember watching one of those property investment programs a while back, a guy bought a flat and then shortly afterwards realised he was liable for £80k of restoration work to the exterior! (I think it was listed in this case)

    ianpinder
    Member

    Ok, so I’m going to view my first flat on Monday hopefully.

    It’s a one bedroom flat in need of refurbishment. It has got 1/2 a kitchen and 1/2 a bathroom according to the description.

    The surface things I can work out myself.

    But what do I need to look for, especially since its a flat!

    geetee1972
    Member

    Noise seems to go down and not up in flats. Top floor is the best place to be. Leasehold could be share of freehold. Where will you keep you Nicolais? If you need space I would be happy to stable one for you. 😀

    Welcome back btw.

    teef
    Member

    On the end of the block – no side ways neighbours

    project
    Member

    Service charge wether paid monthly or in one big hit,

    is a water meter fitted, if so you cant get it remeoved, but i have one and it works out cheaper,

    use of any communal gardens , drying spaces, washing lines and car parking etc, also cost of parking permit if required, maximum number of cars allowed per flat usually just one, cycle storage,.

    are pets allowed,even if you dont have any, you dont want a yappy dog as a neighbour,

    is their a residents management committee, ask for copies of the accounts of the management of the block,

    is any major planned maintenance due to go ahead in the next few months, eg scafolding, redecoration, new roof , electrics or windows,

    google the block to see what comes up, eg neighbours being arrested etc,

    visit at night to see who arrives and departs parking, etc,

    having a fridge or tv and a settee in the grounds doesnt mean its an affluent block, just that theyve been dumped there by residents, also check corridors for similar stuff its a high fire risk.

    look for elements of poor maintance, ask about gardening and cleaning services of comunal areas, and is the cost included in the service charge.

    oh and i live in an appartment, and am a director of the management committee.

    Premier Icon zippykona
    Subscriber

    In my friends flat the landlord decided to change the numbers on everyones flat. They got charged £78 each.
    I would never buy a lease hold the landlords can do just about whatever they want. Once your lease goes below 75 years prospective buyers get wary. Extending your lease gets legal and expensive.
    Things may have changed in the 13 years since I was scared off buying a flat.

    chunkypaul
    Member

    I’m thinking it will need a new kitchen, bathroom, carpets and full decoration. Contractual wise what should I be looking for?

    Anything between £5k-£10k, depending on quality of finish and whether you are doing it yourself or using tradesmen

    ianpinder
    Member

    Ok

    I went to see the flat this afternoon.

    The Flat has been empty over a year, the lady who owned it died and it’s been on the market for a year because 3 people have come close to buying it and pulled out wasting time.

    There is planned maintanence of the flat, £20000 in total, my share would be £5000. The service charge is as and when required rather the monthly, which suits me because I’ll spend this £5000 and then I won’t be keeping it more then three years so shouldn’t have anymore costs after this.

    The road is a quite road close to the nearest train station.

    The house wa very quite but I’ll check it out this evening for extra noise.

    The whole flat would have to be stripped and redecorated, but it is quite a nice size. Also I’d want to fit gas central heating.

    There are two things that worry me. The guy who owns the freehold wants owner tenants and no buy to let’s. Also it only has 73 years on the lease left. There is talk of him selling us the lease.

    The flat is on the market for £57k

    I have offered £41.5k

    Done up nicely it will be on the market for £70k

    I have the money in the bank so there would be no mortgage.

    b r
    Member

    There is planned maintanence of the flat, £20000 in total, my share would be £5000.

    Don’t confuse budget with actual.

    I won’t be keeping it more then three years so shouldn’t have anymore costs after this.

    Why, and if you’ve the cash why not just buy what you really want?

    ianpinder
    Member

    No, I have £50k, which is enough to buy it and pay or the planned maintanence.

    The money would only be sitting in the bank, so I might as well buy this, do it up, make some money whilst saving myself rent. I don’t really want a mortgage and this is similar to what I’m renting now.

    And only for three year because I’m a civil engineer and this project only lasts for three years and then I move to the next one…..

    jon1973
    Member

    General advise when buying is to visit the area at different times of the day to get a feel for what it would be like to live there….e.g. do loads of annoying kids hang around after dark etc.

    tazzymtb
    Member

    Top floor

    important thing, where are going to store and clean your bikes!!!!

    ianpinder
    Member

    Well there is a balcony to clean them on, but mostly I clean them with te dirt worker before I put them in my car. The stairs are inside my flat from the second floor to the top floor. I’ll put some pullies on the full height ceiling above the middle landing on the stairs. There is enough height for them to hang from the ceiling and still walk underneath.

    project
    Member

    so the flat is 57k, and you have 50 k, and have offered 41.5 k.

    Maths and capitalist ecconomies isnt a strong point is it, also have you budgeted for inurance ,council tax and water rates etc, then there is the national grid connection fee for gas if there is a main near by.

    Also as a civil engineer, what are you currently working on, a fantastic job, that leaves lots of stuff for future generations.

    ianpinder
    Member

    The estate agent said it should sell for around £45k the max I’ll go to is £47k the money to do it up will come from my salary.

    As for the project I’m working on, it’s a new road with is meant to revitalise the area where I am buying the flat.

    saxabar
    Member
    Dales_rider
    Member

    Going tubeless

    gusamc
    Member

    check with other tenants that the ‘management/freeholder’ is atually contactable and honours their terms and the terms are fair/sensible etc and if there have been any shonikess/contract changes recently or they can sell the conract on with a change of terms – e.g bulb change in hall £250 …. out of the ‘pot’so the pot must be increased

    check leasehold – I’ve seen some flats where the leaseholder paid for the roof repairs, so I’d be very clear on who pays for what and how it’s allocated – e,g – roof leak – top floor will want it fixed NOW, ground floor possibly won’t give a damn or any money …………… if it’s not clearly legally documented ………….

    what are ongoing charges for stuff and are there any buying selling rstrictions etc – 73 years is a short lease (IMHO), also check for ‘clauses/covennts’ – it might be illegal to keep bikes etc etc etc………..

    “The guy who owns the freehold wants owner tenants and no buy to let’s. ” – that doesn’t matter (*apart from potentially very messy politics and unpleasnt issues …) – but what does the lease say in legal terms

    Premier Icon zippykona
    Subscriber

    Off topic, but you can buy a flat for 41k?
    Darn Sarf that might get you a bit of the garden.
    No wonder all the South East is being built on, as its just a chance to print money.
    I would say the cheapest flat you could buy around here would be £120,000. I can’t see that your wages are one third of mine.
    How the hell my teenage family members will ever get on the property ladder down here I don’t know.
    I’m assuming you’re up north ,you lot must be rolling in it!
    My 3 bed semi would cost £300000 and around £1100 to rent.
    That isn’t a boast,same as I wouldn’t boast if our petrol cost 3 times yours.

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen
    Subscriber

    it’s been on the market for a year because 3 people have come close to buying it and pulled out wasting time.

    you need to be critical and work out whether those 3 people were time-wasters or having their time wasted. Its possible they learned something that you don’t know yet

    Dales_rider
    Member

    My 3 bed semi would cost £300000 and around £1100 to rent.

    Thats cheap you live in a poor area ?

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