Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Finally - news on the house!

Well, here we are. After accepting an offer at the end of April on this house, from a couple with no chain, and with us moving into rented accomodation and thus with no chain either, after more than 2 months we're finally about to exchange contracts. The deposit cheque has been banked by our buyer's solicitor, and once it has cleared the banking system, contracts will be exchanged. Hoorah!

The timing is excellent, as after 6 weeks of scrutinizing Rightmove on a daily basis for a rental property that suits our needs, and with that search ranging from the tip of Cornwall to Southern Scotland, we have found our next home.

It's a converted pub, in Bury - my home town! I drank in there on at least one occasion, albeit more than 15 years ago. I think I did the pub quiz there...

It has space - 5 bedrooms and 3 reception rooms, as well as a lovely big kitchen. Being an ex-pub, it also has cellars! Those aren't really habitable unfortunately, but they'll be great for storage, and I really should put some kind of home-brew kit in there, it would be rude not to!

It's only half a mile to Bury's largest park, a mile to Bury town centre and 4 miles to Grandma's house. And when I rang the school admissions department on Monday, we secured the last place available at the local school for Lara.
It's been awkward with her and school until now, as she has known which primary school she had a place for in Wycombe, and recognised it whenever we drove past it, and questions like "When will I be going to that school?" had to be answered in a rather faffy manner. We had to take her to a half hour induction there last week, in case the sale of the house fell through and she would need to start school there. Other parents were buying uniforms for their children, and again it was difficult for us to explain to Lara why we couldn't buy her uniform yet. At that point we hadn't seen the house in Bury, so we couldn't give her any positive news about where she would be going to school.

As it turned out, all the research on Rightmove proved fruitless; there were houses we liked that got taken by other people because we weren't in a position to apply for them, and the endless waiting for the buyer's solicitors to do what they needed to do was getting us very frustrated. In the end it was a little like Lara's birth - lots of waiting for something you know is going to happen, then everything happens very quickly and sooner than you expected!  Occasionally I'd look on findaproperty.com for a change, and a week or so ago I saw this house on there, and saved it as a possibility. I came back to it on Friday morning, and decided I needed to find out some more information about it, as the particulars on the website were quite basic. I rang the lettings agent, he answered some questions over the phone, and said he'd send me more information by email. This arrived at 5.15 on Friday afternoon, and it was very good news - internally the house gave us the space we needed, and the landlord didn't mind us having dogs. I went to pick Lara up from nursery, and by the time I got back 30 minutes later, I had received an email from our solicitors - yes, at 5.45 on a Friday afternoon - saying that there would be no more enquiries from our buyers, and that they would be in a position to exchange contracts next week. So finally we had the green light to seriously consider putting an application in on a house, if we found one we liked. I rang the lettings agent again on Saturday morning, and we arranged a viewing on the house for Sunday afternoon. That was perfect for us, so we had a day trip up to Grandma's on Sunday, and went to see the house.  It has tenants in at the moment, and it was quite cluttered, including a full-size motocross dirtbike in the kitchen, but once I had mentally replaced their clutter with ours, and Olga and I had discussed it at length on the 3 hour drive home, we decided it was the right house. The application went in on Monday morning (just in time, the lettings agent had had three calls about the house that morning), we sent the forms and supporting documents back last night, and by at 5pm today I had the call that our references were fine and as far as they were concerned, this was a done deal and the house is ours. Apparently, Joe the Landlord is delighted with us as prospective tenants. I suppose we don't really pose much risk to his property!
So we went from not having a house to move to, to it being "Let agreed" in 5 days.

The plan is to complete the sale of this place on Friday 10th August, that'll be confirmed once the contracts are exchanged, hopefully on Friday, which will be a lovely birthday present for me.

So the clock is ticking now on clearing everything out of this house. We've already filled one and a quarter storage units in Storage King, and the house still looks full. I think we'll use all that space in the cellar...

No comments: