Joey Mac asked for more details of the house we have almost bought. I have not mentioned this in more detail because the sale is by no means complete. Yes we have made an offer on a property, and yes that offer has been accepted, and yes our mortgage application has been approved, but two possible deal breakers remain. Firstly, there is the approximately 146 Polish tenants who currently occupy the house. Our offer to buy includes that the tenants have to be out of the house before we finalize the deal. If the tenants are not gone, then we will not buy, and we have today been given a date of December 19th (note to self - must e-mail Bill) by the landlord's agents, so it could be a busy holiday period.
The second potential hiccough (or is hiccup correct ?) is the survey, which in the UK is a slightly more formal, and can be a more professional review of the structure, value and fabric of the building than in Canada. As those of you who are Canadian are aware, the Canadian housing inspector profession (UK equivalent is Surveyors) is woefully unregulated. In fact, my experience is that in Canada, a chimpanzee who has barely passed its' Nest Building Proficiency Badge can easily set up business as a Housing Inspector, and be flooded with work. The trading name of the most famous Housing Inspector Company in Halifax, NS is Inspector Clouseau, and that this company is named after a bungling idiot Detective who screwed up everything he touched is a fair reflection of the average skill level within the "profession". In this case, the name is not ironic.
Anyway, our survey is to be conducted shortly, and I expect that it will tell us that a new roof is required, that the house requires rewiring, and that there is damage caused by damp as a result of a leaky bay window. Again, if there are more serious structural problems we wil probably withdraw from the sale and absorb the costs to date. We want to buy a house which is in need of improvement, and do not mind serious improvements - in fact that's the whole idea. However, we will not get involved in re-building.
The house itself is a four bedroom mid-terrace, about 100 years old, small back yard, very badly maintained and the aforementioned tenants. Full pictures will be available if the sale proceeds to completion, but for now, we're just planning the cost of renovations. This is itself also not a wasted exercise if this house does not get purchased because we'll need the info that we're currently finding out at some point or other anyway.
Nel has pulled out of the purchase about 17 times (yesterday), while I am planning to have solar panels, a small wind turbine, rainwater collectors, ground source heat pumps and a living roof completed by December. Ah, the joys of half-empty/half full.