Money is dull

22 March, 2009

I am in the process of buying my first house.

Unless you’ve already done it, you would not believe how tedious it is. You can read a lot about how stressful it is, but so far I’ve not found it very stressful, only irritating when I can’t get in touch with the bank. Other than that, it seems like an excuse for “financial institutions” (translate: black holes for your money) to send you loads of paperwork which you will have to read, check for naughty loopholes, sign, return and also send to someone else because why would any of the people you’re employing talk to one another?

Thankfully we’ve had the net to help us out. There are hundreds and probably thousands of sites which give advice on everything from mortgages, home inspections, how to negotiate price, how to use your estate agent (i.e. don’t, just use – they actually have good information on pretty much everything), the difference between surveying and conveyance, moving and so on. It is all profoundly boring and yet you’re somehow expected to know it all for this one purchase, starting from a knowledge base of zero, which, in the scheme of things, despite total prices, isn’t really that expensive. sigh.

What it certainly is, is a cash cow. No wonder the banks et al. have been hoisted with the petard of their own greed, we’ve paid around £2,000 on our house move (you have to “buy” the right to get into hundreds of thousands of pounds of debt, and you have to “buy” the right to make sure the building is, y’know, actually *as described* and without fundamental problems) and the sellers could still pull out at any moment, if they wanted to.

Anyway, I cannot even imagine doing all of this without net connectivity. It would have taken *weeks* just to do what can now be done in hours. The preparation alone would have been a massive timesink, and I can totally see people getting even more robbed by banks by being sold their expensive add-on insurances which are mostly much more expensive than specialist sellers (which, of course, places like moneysupermarket will compare for you and moneysavingexpert will give advice on).

Hopefully you can gather from the tone of this that I think the whole charade is a big fat con, but more than that, just incredibly, incredibly boring.

See other posts tagged with general houses money moving and other posts made in March 2009.


23 March, 2009 at 13:21

It was stressful enough before the home info pack scam.
In our case there was a stipulation in the contract that from offer to completion it had to be done in 28 days or it went back on the open market.You can imagine what that month was like.
I hope it all goes well for you.

23 March, 2009 at 13:31

“from offer to completion it had to be done in 28 day”

WTF?! That’s pretty unusual from what I hear.

I think we’re actually doing pretty well, hopefully we will be sorted soon. The biggest delays have been getting in touch with, and waiting for meetings with, the mortgage adviser. Everything else has been pretty much same-day.

23 March, 2009 at 13:40

It was a repossession, late ‘Nineties. Two years old but but unchanged from the day it was built. The Estate Agent was under strict instructions in order to clear the debt so had these rules about completion. Even then they allowed viewing’s during that 28 days (no one did tho’).

You’ve been waiting a while for this so I’m really pleased you’re underway. Fingers crossed it’ll be smooth. Are you moving to another town/place or staying roughly where you are?

23 March, 2009 at 13:53

FYI (read and destroy)

I’m getting 504 Gateway Time-out nginx/0.6.32 after each submit.

23 March, 2009 at 19:23

Yes, some problems today. Boo.

23 March, 2009 at 19:29

Two years! That is Not Long.

We’re staying roughly where we are. We’ve been putting moving off for about two years (partly due to prices but mostly because we’re so amazingly lazy) but we finally decided to get the hell on with it. Completion date was mooted today with a delay for the sellers’ kids to do some exams in May but then pretty sharpish after that. Hurray!