No Longer for Sale

Our house went to Auction last Thursday night and we were number 18 of 21 properties up for auction on the night.   Four of the five people who said they were interested in buying turned up and registered but as the properties went on the market and prices were below what was expected it became obvious to me that we may not get what we wanted.

We had the house valued pre-Christmas by the bank and had dropped the reserve price by $20k below that valuation in the hope that once we got to that stage in the auction and went on the market that the competition would drive it up towards the valuation.

The opening bid was $40k below the reserve and that was a bid by the auctioneer on our behalf.  He then raised it by $10k and we got one bid only at $1k above that.   Eventually we settled for a figure $2k below the reserve but well under what we were hoping for.   It became very much a decision around whether the bird in the hand was worth more than any potential offer we might have gotten outside the auction.  No contest really given the cooling in the market, the fact that we are facing an interest rate rise in the next three weeks and the absolute confusion over what this Federal Government is going to do with that monster lurking in the background, the Carbon Tax.

At least now we can move on and enjoy the new place.

Speaking of which the front is now rendered and the kitchen and bath room cabinets almost finished.  Our site supervisor, despite earlier telling us it would be ready by the end of June, is now saying 75 to 90 days.  I suspect he is just being ultra conservative because it seems to be moving pretty well at the moment with the painters due to start tomorrow.

Open for Inspection

With the new build moving fairly quickly now and seemingly on track for an end of June finish our current house has been put on the market as of last Thursday.  Today we had our first pen with three couples coming through which I didn’t think was too bad given it only went up on the net on Thursday night.   We’ll have opens on Thursdays and Saturdays at least until we go to auction in mid-May, unless of course we get an offer in the meantime.

Here are the pics used in the marketing material.  I think they’ve come up pretty well.

Land is settled

Well we are now the owners of a new plot of land in Cranbourne North.   Actually we fully own a bit and the bank through a mortgage owns the rest but not forever.

We are still waiting on the construction loan to be approved and whilst our builder has scheduled us to start on Tuesday that will now have to be postponed.  The bank valuer is still refusing to budge on the grounds that houses the value of ours haven’t been sold in the area and therefore he won’t put the right value on either the land or on the construction.    Our broker has been busily tracking down sales in the area and has now gone back to the valuer with evidence of similar sized houses in the area having been sold for between $50k and $100k more than what he has valued ours at.

The other option we are pursuing is discharging the mortgage on our current house and taking that to the CBA as well, thus including the equity we have in this one in the overall formula.  Even if this one is valued at the lower end of the range we will still save $10k in mortgage insurance.  The only problem is this will all take time which will mean delays in building and possibly in our place in the queue.   In any event I am hoping it will be sorted out in the next fortnight.

Settlement is coming

After buying our block of land in January we will finally own it on Friday. We’ve been talking over the last week about whether or not we should delay the build until after we sell our curent house because we have to borrow more than 80% of the cost and the bank wants to charge us around $19,000 in mortgage insurance.

The bank will only value our land at what we paid for it back in January despite the fact that you try and buy a block of similar size to ours on the estate now, you’d be paying at least $50k more. And to add insult to injury they are only valuing our build at $30k less than what it is costing us. The problem is they don’t look at the plans they base the entire assessment on the price per square meter for a built house in the same suburb have been going for recently. That’s despite the fact that there are many houses bigger and more expensive than ours being built in the same estate now. No wonder these pricks made $5 billion profit this year.

So the bank wants me to pay insurance for them in the event that I renege on the loan and the house is worth less than what is owed on it they can claim on that insurance.  Not me – I can’t claim, even though I’m paying for it.  How does that work?  Never mind that since I bought my first home in 1982 I have never been late on a payment, not once.

What a rort. I understand why the bank needs to protect themselves but why do I have to pay a premium for insurance when in three months time I’d be under the limit anyway? Any bankers out there please explain.

Anyway – delaying the build would mean we’ll have to rent somewhere, which means moving twice and probably also having to put stuff in storage. We’d have to find a place that would let us bring our dogs and it’s just too much of a friggin pain in the arse to go that way. So we’ll pay the bloody insurance and get the place built so we can move in and enjoy it.

On a much more pleasant note, thanks to the wonders of the internet, we have met a number of our new neighbours already and we’re both really looking forward to moving into the area and putting down new roots.

My lady is keeping the entire house building saga up to date on her blog Destination 3977 so please feel free to pop in and say hello.

Busy Times

Again it’s been way too long since I wrote but life has been very busy.  Work this year has come with new and challenging duties and one day I might be able to talk about them openly but not now.

We currently have 2 and a half kids [read young adults] living with us and another who will and that has meant that our little 3 bedroom home is way too small.  So we’ve spent a few weeks deciding on what to do and with the cost of extensions way too high for what we’d get we’ve decided to bite the bullet and build a new house with 5 bedrooms.

It was a long and often fruitless search for land and with little available where we currently live we’ve decided to move out to Melbourne’s south east in a brand new estate that is currently a cow paddock.   Used to being surrounded by trees that is going to take a big adjustment for me but that’s a compromise brought on by the size of our budget and I guess I’ll get used to it.

For the first 49 years of my life I only lived in two places but since separation and divorce have moved twice with the next being maybe the penultimate one.  One day I intend to retire to the south coast of New South Wales.

Went and saw Rob Thomas Friday of last week – bonus was the encore with INXS – sensational

Mum was admitted to hospital yesterday after bleeding from the bowell for a day without telling anyone.  She will be having a colonoscopy at some time in the next couple of days so we cross our fingers.  She will be 80 later this year so any operation is a worry.

That is a very brief update just in case anyone is stil interested.  I won’t promise to get back to writing regularly although I would like to.  I have started keeping a hand written journal again just to record some of the unpublishable stuff so that my kids will know a few more things when I shuffle off the old mortal coil.

Hope that all my blog buddies are still well 🙂