When Things Go Wrong

Inevitably there are times when things just don’t go to plan.

It happens to all of us as we all make mistakes but as long as we learn from them then that’s fine.  After all, there is no success without failures.

Anyway I’ve  had a bit of a set back 😦 If you’ve been following my posts you’ll remember me talking a while back about the ‘Assisted Sale’ I completed on and at the end of the post I said I had another one in the pipeline?

The 3 bed semi

Anyway, a retired couple had cotacted me (through my leaflets) saying they wanted to sell their 3 bed semi (in Leicester) as it was too big for them.

It was a non standard build property (BISF – steel construction) which can be difficult to sell (and get a mortgage on as some lenders don’t like them) however I’d spoken to my broker and he assured me there WERE lenders happy to lend on it depending on the buyers criteria.

There was no mortgage on the property, they just wanted to sell it, rent a small flat and live off the money as they had no relatives to leave it to. They’d been thinking about it for a while and decied to do something about it when they read my leaflet 🙂

It had a good sized garden

They were a lovely couple and I spent a lot of time with them finding out what they wanted to do and how etc. Eventually we came to an agreement. I would find them a nice flat in the area they wanted, pay all their legal fees, solicitors, Estate Agents etc and they’d sell the property to me for £60,000, market value was around £90,000.

They didn’t want the hassle of dealing withthe EA, showing people around, legal issues etc so I was going to do all that.

I found them a gorgeous flat exactly where they wanted and to their specs, one bed, ground floor, central location, that was being advertised by a letting agent. I picked them up, took them to see it, they loved it and wanted to move in asap but wanted the rent a bit cheaper.

So I negotiated the price with the landlord via the agent and got it at the price they wanted. They were delighted and decided to move in within a couple of weeks so I put the house on the market with an estate agent.

They didn’t have a lot of money behind them so I offered to lend them £2,000 so they could move into the new place (to pay upfront tenancy fees etc, and this amount would come off their share on sale of the house. (This was all written up in the T&C’s on the Option Agreement)

I’d already had it valued at 90k (by the EA) but was marketing it at 85k as I wanted a quick sale. I figured that if I could sell it for about 75k I’d still make a good profit after the legal fees were paid. I luckily made 12k on my previous assisted sale and was hoping I could repeat it! If you missed it You can read about it here

So to save a bit of money I thought we’d hire a van and move them ourselves, so my hubby Mike and son Nick and I got there early to start loading the van! It was a nightmare, I’ve never seen so much stuff and they’d packed most of it into black plastic bin liners…they were everywhere!!

There was Mike dismantling their electrics beds and Nick heaving the washing machine & fridge into the van while I was piling up a sea of black bin liners and going back & forth in an attempt to get as much as possible into the first load.  I don’t know how the hell they thought all that stuff was going to fit into a one bed flat haha.

As the old couple weren’t very moblie and the guy had a bad hip I didn’t expect him to do any lifting so I took them to the new flat in the car with a couple of chairs and made them a cup of tea while I went back to carry on with the loading.

We had to make two trips so it was a total of 40 miles in the van and a couple of car trips to pick up the last few bits, my car was covered in mud from all the bloody pot plants in the garden :/ but after 6 hours we’d done……or so we thought!

They then wanted help to put the beds back together, the washer needed plumbing in and they needed help to unpack the heavy items and make up the beds, plus I went to the local shop to get them some chips as they were hungry!!

Then we had to go back and start taking up the old carpets, stripping walls in the lounge & kitchen and re-painting it . There wasn’t a lot of work to do but it still took us another couple of days to finish it. we were knackered by the end of it but thought it would be worth it in the end.

The area where the property was situated was a ‘bit rough’ and we had a couple of problems, we visited the property regularly to make sure everything was ok and one time someone had stolen the bark and plastic underlay from the front garden, so it looked a righ mess,  and someone else had thrown a door and broken furniture over the fence into the back garden. So obviously we (Mike) had to clear this up!

Then there were the phone calls from the couple “Can you please do this for us” “Could you please come and show us how this works” “the Alliance & Leicester is shut, what can we do” etc etc! They were always pleased to see me though and treated me like part of the family bless em!

Initially there was a lot of interest in the property and we had an offer of 72k but the guy couldn’t get a mortgage (because of the build). The estate agent said people were put off because of the type of property. Two months later we had another offer of 70k from a guy who’d come from London to view it, he wanted to buy it to let.

I went to see the old couple to give them the good news and was astounded when they said (very matter-of-factly) that they’d had a nice time at the flat but had decided they wanted to go back home as they missed the neighbourhood,  ‘pottering about in the garden’ !and they didn’t think their BUDGIE liked it there!!!!!! Grrrrrrr

It’s a good job I’ m a patient person or I would’ve strangled them and buried them under the patio! After chatting with them for a while it seemed they were adamant that they were going back so I had to accept that, but also told them we had incurred fees which would have to be paid back (the £2000, van hire, EA fees etc) which they agreed to pay by getting a loan 😦

SO……they ended up moving back (with their own removal van this time) we had to tell the guy from London he couldn’t buy the property and the landlady of the flat wasn’t pleased as the 6 month tenancy was only in it’s 3rd month. And this is cutting a long story short lol!

We wasted a lot of time on this project but at least we recouped our costs, which made me feel very guilty as the old couple had to get a loan to pay us back. I’m a big softy and was thinking of letting them off but Mike quite rightly said “We’re not running a charity”.

They were fine about it, and said “Well at least we tried it out”  and asked me to keep in touch as they’d miss me!

Anyway, a valuable lesson was learnt, don’t mess with pensioners or non-standard builds again, and I have to ‘man up’ and stop being so soft! 🙂

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Johnny Debt
    Jan 17, 2011 @ 11:44:11

    I have never heard of anyone going on holiday with all their stuff!!!

    It really seem like it was a total nightmare for you, it seems to be that you learnt a huge batch of lessons from this one.

    Reply

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