Tuesday, 28 February 2012

28th February 2012

Ok so new outlook is needed. Sitting here waiting for people to call, possible offers, different scenarios, is not helping my health, well being, mood or sleep.

Yesterday it occurred to us that the investor guy who was interested but only had 230k might now be a good option, based on yesterday's potential offer and our discussions with other people. So I got the agent to contact him. Despite leaving a message last night he has not returned their calls.

So far today the guy who shortlisted us and said he would come back Monday or Tuesday has not rung back.

I am becoming increasingly convinced that these people are saying what the agent wants to hear and not what they feel. If I was interested in something I would make contact to make sure I secured it.

I spoke at length to the manager this afternoon, and he said they were still working hard to get us a buyer but obviously dealing with the public was difficult for them and as much as they want to sell it they are constrained by what the buyers want to do. He said sometimes even when they have offers in and accepted, the buyers then go missing.

So if I keep analysing like I am doing now, I am going to drive myself nuts.

Anyhow the sale board for the other agent has gone up, but so far no viewings through them and in fact no contact at all. If the board had not gone up I would wonder if they had actually taken us on.

One thing is for sure I am not going to eat my way through this process. Don't get me wrong I could quite easily turn to food and put on all the weight I have lost, and it is hard not too eat loads of stuff to get by, but I know how hard it has been and closing in now on a total weight loss of 6 stone since January 2011 is inspiring me to keep going.

Th whole thing would be much easier with just an offer from a buyer for our house. Not much to ask is it?

Monday, 27 February 2012

27th February 2012

Not the exciting day we had both planned for. The Estate agent rang to say the guy who had shortlisted us with one other property was going to be busy today and would either ring later today or tomorrow.

The lady did ring and did like our house a lot. Her main worry was the noise from the road for her husband. She wants him to see it before finally making an offer. He is back in th country next week and they will come back to have another look. In a way I am please with that as I would not have wanted her to put in an offer and for things to get under way only for her husband to come in a few weeks time and say he did not like it and then pull out. I think this is best all round. The concern though is that she indidcated that she would be offering 225k. It is about what I had originally thought and shows how bad the two Estate Agents valued it at.

Hopefully if she is really interested we could gt her upto 230k and that might be ok for everyone. We shall see.

So we wait on this other chap, and then hope we get some more viewings. It is now on right move with the new agent and they said we might be a week or so away from them getting anyone to see it.

Anyhow, not all doom and gloom but having spent yesterday thinking something would happen today, it turned out to be a bit flat.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

26th February 2012

Tomorrow could be a very interesting day, or perhaps a very disappointing one. As I said yesterday we are on a shortlist of two for one of the viewers we saw yesterday.

Today a very lovely lady came round to view. We showed her around and it was much better us doing it as it gave us a chance to chat to her. It seems she has missed out on some properties but needs to make a decision soon as she is in rented house in Crouch End and needs to move out because it is too small and she has a dog which the he owner does not like. Her husband works abroad and has left her to make a decision herself.

She was looking at only too more properties, ours and another one on the other side of the A10 but not right on it as we are. From her point of view she wants a big kitchen and an outside office for her husband. I must be end of terrace. The other property only has two bedrooms but that does not seem to be of importance. They have a small kitchen and have knocked through to have one long living/dining room. It is only 2 bedrooms, the master is slightly bigger than ours as it extends across the whole of the front of the property, the 2nd bedroom is he same as ours.

She really liked our kitchen and said the road noise was not too bad and did not bother her at all, but it might her husband. She like the brick built shed we had and the fact it was wired and that it could be widened if necessary.

We both feel quite excited by this and potentially two offers might come in, or of course we might not get any. However things are much more positive.

So fingers crossed for a good day tomorrow, and the possibility that we may have a choice of offers to make a decision on, of course I would just settle for one.

Keep you all posted.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

25th February 2012

Well quite a busy day today. Yesterday we had4 viewings. The feedback we got was not great, same old thing, noisy, too small etc. one lady even came from Finsbury Park to view, and admitted she did not really want to see it but the agent persuaded her too. She already lives on a main road and her son has asthma. I was beginning to think the estate Agent was just throwing anyone at us.

Today however was much more promising. 4 viewings again and I have to say that all of them seemed much keener to be here. Spent time looking around, asked questions and chatted as if they were interested.

At this time we have only had feedback from 2. The first one was a lady who was a child minder. She liked it but had seen another property which she could set up better, the problem with ours is that she needs a separate kitchen area for her job. How typical, we took down the wall to make the back room and kitchen bigger, and she was talking about putting it back up.

The other feedback came from a young Asian couple. His name was Mitesh. We are told we are on their shortlist of 2. The other property being just round the corner, a 2 bedroom place with a loft room. It is still close to the A10, about 20 yards away. That is on for 253k so he was going to check his figures and decide between the two of us and advise on Monday.

It's funny, I had a good feeling about him as he was going round but we will wait and see what happens.

We have another viewing booked in for tomorrow morning, the agents are shut so we will have to show them around. She was keen to see the property though, again another good sign.

Friday, 24 February 2012

24th February 2012

Well that was an interesting but somewhat confusing day yesterday. During the morning, with no contact from the Estate Agent I called the manager. I asked him why it had gone so quiet after he promised me more viewings. He said they were doing everything they could, they were calling people and circulating to other office and were working hard on it. I mentioned to him that we may well engage another Estate Agent to go on the sole/joint agency we had agreed with them. There was nothing they could say about this as they had offered this at the same rate. He asked us to give him until Saturday before doing so, I agreed, knowing Helen was ringing a new agent at lunchtime for him to come and see us on Saturday.

The Agent we were going to contact was one used by quite a few of our friends, some who new the owner very well and spoke highly of the service. Anyhow at lunchtime Helen rings me and says he is not free on Saturday but can come today. I saw no reason why not and arranged for him to come round.

He arrived and we had a chat. Basically what they can offer is that they have office all over North London and find most clients move from inner London out to the outer boroughs when they want to upgrade but cannot afford where they are. He also said that he had sold bigger properties along our road for a lot less than our original 250k and now "offers over 240K" asking price. He thought 230k was more realistic. A pattern was forming here, following yesterdays blog where two other respected people said we were asking too much. Thinking as well about some friends who moved a year ago from a bigger property near us with bigger garden and extension, they sold for £250K, originally our first Agent had put them on at £270K and they reduced. It appears the cowboys over inflate the price.

So the new agent said he would market our property, on the same joint/sole agreement rate as our current agent, he said he would also do floor plans, the other two did not offer these. He said he normally charges £60 for them but would do it for free, sales talk again possibily but it could be because of the people we know who knows him. Floor plans are important as it show people lay out and rooms in comparison to others before they agree to come. Thinking about it when we have been looking on right move, we often skip properties without floor plans as you do not know how the propertry is laid out.

Anyhow in total he spent an hour with us, so much longer than the other to, he did not promise loads of viewings but promised to send the right people. He also said he would prefer to put it on at £235k but as we had already reduced twice it would be better to put on at £239,995. I asked him to delay until Saturday as that is what I had agreed to our Agent, he said by the time he had everything together, it would be Saturday morning anyway. He then left and I felt quite positive.

Then it all went made, I then started to receive call after call from our current agent. At the end of the day we had 5 viewings scheduled in and two more waiting confirmation. Was this a response to my saying we were getting someone else involved, who knows.

So we have 3 booked in for today and tomorrow I will contact them to tell them they are now in a joint agency position and hopefully now we will find a buyer.

What it has done though is made us look at the figures we have. We think we can still afford to move, even if we went down to 225K (this was my original estimate for valuation last year) but it would probably mean that the detached house is not an option now. However the main objective is to move to a bettter area and for Helen not to have to work so hard. So come please lets have some offers in.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

23rd February 2012

Silence is golden, or so the song says. Well the silence from our Estate Agent is worrying. After promises that we would see an drastic increase in viewings from Tuesday onwards, here we are Thursday morning and still we have had none since last Friday and no new ones scheduled in.

Yesterday we did something we should have done from the start. We started to talk to friends and people we know who have moved recently, are Estate Agents or just know people who are Estate Agents. These are friends we know and trust.

We spoke to a friend who is an Estate Agent in Barnet (no good for our area) but she works for an independant agency and she says the two we had been using are baiscally crooks and give Estate Agents a bad reputation. She said look at their stats on a site they use our price of 249K is vastly over priced for our area. They do this to get people to sign up with them, with the promise of selling it quickly for you.

Another person I know very well from when I was at Nortel, he was a supplier of mine and has a temp agency in Enfield Town, told me to talk to an agent friend he has also in the Town. The same agent was also recommended by an old guy I know from my Cricket Playing days. I spoke to them this morning and basically they said our property should not be on for anymore than £240k.

So in general terms we are over priced.

People who have just moved recently have recommended another agency, smaller one but where the owner is hands on and involved. They both said they had a great experiance with them and he looked after them very well. Helen is going to ring them lunchtime today, as to be honest I have had my fill of Estate Agents now for a lifetime.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

22nd February 2012

Well I have to be honest, we are just over 2 weeks into selling our house and I am already fed up with the whole process. We have had no viewings since Friday, we had one scheduled for tonight but they have now cancelled. I spoke to the Agent yesterday who said that Monday and Tuesdays are quiet but that things will pick up and we should have a lot more viewings this week. He also said he is very confident of selling it soon. The phone however has been quiet and the only call received was to cancel the schedule viewing for tonight.

To add to this I keep getting emails from the first Agent asking if we want to give them another try, at the new price they can shift it with no problem at all.

I just think they are basically all liars and just tell you want you want to hear so they can add your property to the list. How do these guys even work. Surely if someone is looking they register with all the Agents in the area, so client base must be the same. With the internet in place we are on right move so people will see it there, how does one agent differ from another.

All I know is that I am sick to death of the process already, it has taken over my every thought for every minute of every day and at this point in time I cannot see us fullfilling our dream of moving to Kings Lynn and buying the house we have seen and really want.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

21st February 2012

So to today's update. The update is that there is no update. We had both expected a phone call regarding the outcome of the meeting that the guy had with the financial advisor, just to say either that he could not raise the funds or that he was not interested or that he was thinking about or at least something. This is what we are finding most frustrating, the not knowing what is happening. I am sure they are working hard on it but we do not see this, we do not know what they are doing, we do not know what they are saying, we do not know what they are thinking.

Another day passes and no more viewings are booked in. This is the agent who said " we will sell that in two weeks for you", this was the agent who said " we have loads of clients looking for properties like this" - Estate Agents I just don't trust a word they say.

Still I have kept up with plan for this week of not calling them. I was so tempted to call or email after 5pm to find out what happened but resisted. This week I am just going to see what happens. It is not easy though, I am one of those people who needs to know what is happening on a regular basis, but I suppose that from that comes expectations, and from that disappointment. Let's just leave it to them to contact me when there are viewings or progress. It's going to be hard.

Having said yesterday that we had changed the price down to "offers in excess of 240k" I received an email about an hour later. It made me smile, it was from the first Estate Agent we had engaged. It said " hi Paul, I see they have already reduced the price. You see the grass is not always greener on the other side. When you are ready we will be pleased to try again to sell your property"

Well yes to a degree the grass is not always greener, certainley in terms of selling, but the new agent go the for sale board up within 2 days, they pass messages on in the office and return your calls, they got 7 people through the door in the first week, compared to 2 that the other agent managed, so generally I am happy to have moved. You do not know how hard it was not to reply to his email. Twice I had it drafted, and twice I deleted it. If I need them again in the future I will be the one making contact.

Did try one more thing. Bit of a long shot. The owner of the property next door, who rents it out, left me his mobile number when he brought it in case of any trouble. He owns a number of properties. So last night I sent him a cheeky text, asking if he was looking for anymore properties as ours was up for sale. Don't expect a reply, but if you don't ask you don't get.

Monday, 20 February 2012

20th February 2012

So today is 100 days to D day. That is the time when Helen has to hand in her notice and by that date we want to have exchanged contracts. Seems such a short time to me but hopefully it will be Ok.

It was quiet over the weekend, we had no viewings on Saturday and the agent is closed on Sundays. We spoke to the agent on Saturday re the viewings on Friday. He said the man who was looking to buy to rent was very interested but he thought he could only afford 230k, we are on the market at 250k. I wonder why they don't find these things out before they show them around. Anyhow he is going into the offices at 4pm today to see the financial advisor to see what he can actually afford. So that one does not look too hopeful.

This morning I went into their offices with our passports and utility bill. This is proof of identity. We have already given this to our solicitor so why the Estate Agent needs it I have no idea.

Whilst in there we chatted about our asking price. I asked if we were on at the right price. They thought it was as a similar property to ours nearby had just completed at 244k. Having said that one just round the corner from us, without a driveway, went for 225k. They did say though that the 225k was the first offer and she was desperate to sell. Having discussed what our minimum is, 235k for us we then agreed to change the asking price from 250k down to "offers over 240k". They seemed to think this would attract more interest. I hope so.

This week I am going to et on with life, let them contact us when they have viewings or feedback and not ring them at all. I think sometimes by ringing them when we have not had feedback they feed us lines that build our hopes and then it makes us low when things do not come off.

The couple who said that we were on their shortlist of 2 and that they would decide by the end of last week have now said that they are going to keep looking.

I am sure it will come good in the end, the process though is not nice at all.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

18th February 2012

We are back from Kings Lynn and Craig has been offered a place at Springwood, conditional on his GCSE results. So that's one thing we can tick off.

Was a bit low last night driving back, I just wanted to stay up there. We had a lovely afternoon with Sarah, and Kirsty was happy to see Isaac again. Whilst up there we went to look at a new build in the area we are looking at. Very impressed, they are doing 4 bedroom detached houses for a price which gives us change. The bedrooms are good size, it would give us a little more on our room plus en suite. Craig would obviously get a bigger room than he has now, which to be fair would not be difficult. The 3rd room, which would be Kirsty's, is the same size she has now, so that would be fine. Kitchen diner as we have now, a utility room for laundry, 3 toilets (heaven) and lounge which is vastly bigger than ours. Downside, they will only be releasing 2 more properties of that size, deposit is £250, so we have agreed that once they are available we will put a deposit down. If we find something better, or indeed do not mo e at all, then it is not a big loss.

No feedback from Thursdays viewing or in fact from the 3 we supposedly gad yesterday. Being wary of Estate Agents, I am wondering if they really had 3 viewings or if they took the opportunity whilst we were away to pretend they had to make up the numbers.

We have nothing booked in today.

Friday, 17 February 2012

17th February 2012

So we are up in Kings Lynn for Craig's interview at Springwood School. He has just gone and we are waiting in the car.

The estate agent has lined up 3 viewings for our house today, whilst we are away. One of them is investor who wants to buy to rent. So fingers crossed that something happens. Very impressed now with the agent that will be 7 viewings in their first week.

Kids are looking forward to eating at Frankie and Bennies tonight. After the interview we are going into town, have some lunch and then spend the afternoon with Sarah and Isaac.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

16th February 2012

Well I have to say the new agent is certainley bringing the people in through the door. We had our 4th viewing today and there is also the one planned for tomorrow. So far no offers but at least now there is activity and people are looking.

Actually feeling much more relaxed today but I am sure that will not last long. No feedback yet from yesterdays viewing so I guess they are not interested, we still have the one who we are on a shortlist of two for, and of course today's.

The viewing today was an Asian family with their two young boys. The youngest came in and joined Kirsty watching Handy Manny on the TV. They spent a long time looking round, especially upstairs, but it is really difficult to know what they think. The Agent rep was a new one we had not seen before and it was his first time showing around the property.

Kirsty and Helen off to see a pantomime this afternoon with my Mum. They are going to see Peter Pan and Craig is upstairs revising Maths, that must be fun.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

15th February 2012

Well this is just getting silly now. I went to bed last night and just could not get to sleep, lying there playing over scenarios in my head, if this happens we could do that, if that happens we can do this. How stupid we have not even had an offer yet on our house and I just cannot stop trying to plan for every possibillity. Anyhow at 2am I put my headphones on and listened to some music.

Yesterday we gave the Estate Agent a key so they can show people around if we are not here. It had not occurred to me to offer this until they tried to book a viewing in for Friday, when we are not around.

We have had a young couple view the property today. They spent a lot of time here, longer than most so far, and we heard them discussing what they could do with it, in terms of changes, extensions etc.

Now to try and relax and just let the Estate Agent do their job, yeh right.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

14th February 2012

Oh that's a shame. Was already to have a rant on my blog. The Agent had rung this morning to advise that he spoke to the guy last night who puts the boards up and he assured him that ours would be up this morning. As of 12.45 there was still nothing, so I went into the front room to get the iPad to update my blog and low and behold the board was just going up. So we have a board up at last.

Still no more viewings though, the agent told us Monday and Tuesdays were typically light and we should have some more viewings later this week. Then one of his staff called to set up a viewing for this afternoon at 4.000pm, we were due to go to Marion's for dinner so we arranged to delay and wait for the viewing. 30 minutes later he calls back to say he has got the day wrong and it is Friday instead. How can you get Tueday and Friday mixed up?

Anyhow he has to go away and sort out another time as we will be in Norfolk all day and therefore we cannot do any viewings that day. No phone call back as yet to rebook so I guess the lady cannot do another time, he did say she was taking one day out to look at loads of properties.

And that is all for today.

Monday, 13 February 2012

13th February 2012

How difficult is it to get a for sale sign put up outside your house. It's been over a week now and still we do not have one. Apparently it is the same guy who puts them up for both the agents we have been with. This guy must be really busy or have some long lunch breaks or maybe he is the only guy in London who puts up for sale signs. I would have thought that the Estate Agents would want them up so give themselves more advertising, it appears not.

Quiet day today, no more viewings booked, however we did get feedback from one of the viewings on Saturday. The girl who came with her Dad and two friends saw 4 properties and shortlisted 2 of them. We are on the shortlist, so fingers crossed that when she decides she will choose ours. I really hope so, we can then review the offer and possibly relax a bit more, well I might at least. It would be nice though to get some more viewings booked in, when I rang them on Friday he did say they had loads of people looking for this type of property, I am beginning to think this is just a typical sales technique to get your business.

We went to solicitors today, we took passports and mortgage statement to prove our identity. That's another farce, she neither looked at us or the passports, she just went out the back and photo copied them. I paid £250 on account, which they need to start the process. We handed in the forms they had given us to complete so we are all set with the solicitors now.

Carolyn and Matthew came over this afternoon so Kirsty and Matthew could play and Helen and Carolyn could catch up, they are going to stay for dinner. Craig had a Maths revision day at school today and said it was absolutely boring. Impressed though that he went though, had I been offered anything extra at school during the holidays, which was optional, I am sure I would not have gone. He attends all the extra stuff they put on, so well done Craig for that.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

12th February 2012

I am really not sure what is happening to me. Helen said she wanted to go to Harlow this afternoon to buy some clothes and not only did I agree without any hesitation but I also brought some new clothes whilst up there.

It has been a good day, I have given very little thought today about the sale of our house. I am hoping though that next weeks sees an increase in activity. The house is on right move again via the new agent.

Tomorrow we are going to the solicitors after we have done the weekly food shopping. Helen as normal has been organising a very busy week for the half term.

She has also sorted out our valentines night. It is going to be very romantic, an evening in Tottenham at our friend Marion's for dinner. When she arranged it she had forgot that Tuesday was Valentines Day. Anyhow saves me some money, we get to go out and have a free meal so all cannot be bad.

Mum and Dad were over today. Dad has been very active in the purchasing of new tv's and equipment to ready himself for the digital switch over. Apart from their need to have a tele in each room, they must also be able to record in each room and playback dvd's and videos in each room as well. At any one point there can be 3 or 4 programmes being recorded whilst mum is watching something in one room and dad is in another. I said this morning to him that should there be any more riots and looting they would need to forget looting the stores and head straight for Dad's house. He also overspends on everything, and cannot just get a black tv, some rooms need silver or white. It is lquite funny watching him try and coordinate it all. In the end I think he has settled on black everywhere.

Another box packed today. I got Helen to do her wardrobe of non essential stuff, that nearly filled a large box on its own.

Looking forward to watching al film tonight once Kirsty is in bed.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

11th February 2012

Well I am pleased to report that we are still with the same Estate Agent. Feel much more relaxed today. This agent was the one we really should have gone with.

One of the reasons we did not was because having spoken to both of them back in October, the Agent we first engaged was the only one who kept in regular contact to see how we were doing and if we were ready to put the house up. Also the other guy was very slimy and I did not take to him at all. As it turns out that guy left and that is why no one kept in touch. His replacement is much easier to deal with, more a normal person than a car salesman type, you know the thing.

I am happy now, I hope, with our choice, time will tell.

So the two viewings they lined up for today have been and gone. Strategically they arranged it so the second viewing arrived whilst the first one was here. I is to create an air of interest in the property, so they tell me. Wow there are tactics in the Estate Agent business. Also we were told it is best not to walk around the house with them during the viewing, buyers are less likely to ask the agent questions or make comments if the home owner is there.

Anyhow the first person was a young girl, accompanied by her father and two young men, who I assume we're here brothers. They took time looking round, something the author chap did not seem to do. The next viewers were a man and women in their early 30's. They chatted to us a bit but again left them to go round with the agent. By doing that I have no idea what they thought of the place, I will have to wait for the agents feedback. I wonder if they will actually call? You can see I really do not trust any of them.

We received the energy efficiency report today. Hope no one actually pays attention to them as they must be really hard to get a good rating. We have a good boiler, insulated loft, double glazing throughout, use energy saving lightbulbs everywhere yet our rating only came out as an E. The ratings go from A to G with A being the best. Even with all the improvements recommended, which include the installation of solar panels and have insulation fitted to the outside walls ( who is really going to do that ) the rating only goes up to a D.

Kirsty goes very shy when people come to look. As soon as thy knocked she cam into the back room and hid behind the chair. It is good having the house on the market, everyone is keeping things tidy, putting rubbish in the bin and putting things away after using them. I need to think of a way to keep them doing it when we move.

Lovely day today, sunny but very cold, it was still -2 when we went out to the shops this morning. The boiler is putting in hard word and the heating has not been off now for about 3 days.

So that's it for now, do not expect to hear from anyone now until Monday. The new agent does not work on Sundays. So nothing more to do. On Monday we will go to the solicitors to show proof of our identity, hand in our forms and pay a holding fee for them. Now I am paying out money and anyone who knows me knows how much that hurts.

Friday, 10 February 2012

10th February 2012 - Afternoon

So that is me all over. Sitting here worrying when it has only been a week. I put in a call to the agent this morning to find out if we had any other viewings lined up for the weekend , Jerome answered and said they hd none planned. I was not too pleased with that, he then said he had feedback from the viewing on Wednesday. The guy had said that the front room was too small. I asked why he had not called me with the feedback and he just said sorry. Whilst on the phone I asked what was happening with the sale board which I was told would be put up last Monday, he did not know but said he would ensure it was put up over the next few days.

I was not happy, service is very important to me. I could feel a migraine starting. I put a call in to the senior manager who had initially signed us up, he was on the phone would I like to hold. I did, after 3 minutes I got cut off. That ended it for me.

I phone up another agent, one that I had wanted to go with purely because of the presence in the area and the amount of sold signs they had up. He said our property was bread and butter to them, and reckoned he would have it sold within 2 weeks ( we shall see about  that), what he did say is that they had a number of clients on their books looking for this type of property, the other Agent did not ever say this.

Anyhow he came round, took some photos, had a chat and we signed up with them, and have two viewings booked for tomorrow.

I know it is only a week but the first agent really did not fill me with confidence, I may be wrong but there it is, you have to go with your gut instinct and mine told me they would be more hassle than I needed. They said they would prefer to put a smaller number of people through us knowing they were the right ones, well one of them was someone who said it was too noisy with the main road, ITS ON A MAIN ROAD.

I would much prefer 20 people to come round even if 19 were not suitable but the other was the buyer of our house than have hand picked ones which also were not interested.

Only a week in and I am not enjoying this process already.

10th February 2012

This house selling business is all quite slow paced. I had expected a busy week with the house going on the market , assumed that there would be many people who were looking, see a new house on the list and want a viewing.

Obviously not, we have had the two viewings this week, the last one being on Wednesday lunchtime since when I have heard nothing from the Estate Agent. When we last sold a property it was sold within 10 days and that was in a time without the internet. Knowledge of properties was only available via the for sale sign, by contacting the Agent or by the local paper. Nowdays people use the various web sites displaying properties for sale as the main source for finding a property.

Today we have someone coming to do an Energy Efficiency Test for the house. This certificate is legally required now when selling a property. He said it wil take about an hour and they look at things like the boiler, heating systems, insultation, use of energy saving bulbs etc. They charge you £65 for the privilege, probably its just another one of those things that makes people some money for something which most people are not acutally interested in.

The snow is back again, not as heavy as last weekend, just hoping we do not have anymore, especially towards the end of next week, as we have to travel up to Norfolk on Friday for Craig's interview at the 6th form college. It is a 10 minute interview that we have to make the 2 hour journey for. They have been kind enough to schedule ours during the half term holidays so that we could get there without us rushing up after work, but surely in this day and age it could have been done via skype. I did suggest this to them but the suggestion seemed to get ignored.

Talking of the snow, I have managed to avoid the ice all week walking around and then manage to slip over on some soft mud walking up to school yesterday. Elegance went out the window and the added bonus was all the other parents on their way up to school seeing me. So funny.

With all of this going on we have realised that Kirsty's birthday has crept up on us. This year she just wants to do something with her 3 best friends. So it looks like Bowling and Pizza Hut, which suits me. We do not have to entertain 12 or more 8 year old children. All we need now is for her to think about what she would like for her birthday as at the moment we have no idea.

Weighed in today 12 stone 10lbs. So happy with that, although it is slowing down and is really difficult to keep on it and lose anything. However that is still a drop of 6lbs since Christmas. The total loss now since Jan 2011 is 5 stone 8lbs.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

8th February 2012 - Afternoon update

So our second viewing has taken place and this time the person was much harder to read. He was in his late 50's, an author he said, and was accompanied by a girl in her early 20's. She did not say anything and he did not say much more. They looked around the property, hardly asked any questions, so I volunteered information to them, such as the wiring had been totally replaced 12 years ago, the boiler was in good condition and the loft was insulated and fully boarded. Other than that they looked around, reasonably slowly, there was no great rush, he asked what I did for a living and it was then that he told me about his profession. We shook hands and they left with him thanking me and saying they have other properties to look at.

Earlier the Estate Agent had said that the potential buyer was very keen to see our property. They had suggested others to him but he was insistent on ours, so maybe that's a good sign.

This morning was strange though. I said before that we were in no rush and need to drag this out as long as possible, but after last nights viewing I had convinced myself that she would make an offer and expected the phone to ring first thing in the morning. When it did not I seemed to get uptight. I rang the estate agents a couple of times but the Agent was not around. Why was I getting worked up. We really have no panic until April/May time.

Anyhow the Agent rang me at 11.30 to say the buyer like the property very much but the main road was too noisy especially in the front bedroom. He advised her to get a quote for triple glazing, which is fine but he said he expected her to do this and then come in with an offer of around 239K based on getting the work done. I advised the agent that that price might be accepted come April or May but for now we would only say yes to 245K or above.

We must keep to this, we are in control at the moment, if someone really wants it they can pay near the asking price, that may well change over time but for now that must be our position.

No more viewings booked yet, the agent said he would give me feedback in a couple of days time from todays viewing.

8th February 2012

So we had our first viewing last night. They turned up before the estate agent, so I invited them in and had a chat to them without the Agent. It turns out they have been looking for a year, and have lost two properties very close to finishing. The first was due to a survey which meant the mortgage company would not release the money. The second one, the sellers pulled out two days before exchange of contract. So this seems to be a tough time for them and they really need to buy something. This might be in our favour but who knows.

They seemed to like the property but I sensed a problem with it being on the main road and the noise that brings and also the back garden side fences being very low. The later can be solved quite easily by putting up bigger fences, the noise from the road is not something we notice but each to their own taste I suppose.

If they were to offer anything above £246K then I would accept without hesitiation, even if it meant that we sold a lot earlier than we would prefer. Anything under that would take some consideration and maybe some negotiatiing upwards as we really do not need to be accepting any offers at the moment unless they are really near the asking price.

Another viewing today at 1.40pm, will see how that goes.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

7th February 2012

If anyone does read this please leave a comment otherwise I just think I am talking to myself (LOL)

So the house is now on Right Move and we have our first viewings booked. The first one is tonight at and we have another one booked in tomorrow. The house is tidy but I am not going to keep cleaning and dusting, surely viewers will understand that dust falls on a regular basis.

Was going to cook fish pie tonight but decided against it. The smell of fish cooking might not be the best smell to show the house off. The battle now is to get the children and Helen to keep the house reasonable tidy so I do not have to keep going round just before people come to see it.

Its getting quite exciting now, although maybe after a month with no offers coming in I might not be so happy.

The stuff in the loft is now all packed. 2 rolls of packing tape have been used and I have brought 4 more. This time I went for better quality. The tescos ones were pretty poor and I fear when  we start to move the boxes the tape might come off. Nearly out of boxes now, hoping to find some at the clothes outlet shop tonight when Kirsty goes to Brownies, other than that the removal firm said they supply and we do not have to return them, which is great as the stuff is going into storage.

Helen and I had a lovely date night on Saturday. Kirsty was at her nans so we planned to go out. The weather sort of changed our plans though with the heavy snow forecast so we got the bus into Town, ate at ChmiChanga's, it was really really nice, got the bus back to nearer home and sat in the pub for the rest of the evening.

Very relaxing and nice to be on our own for a while. Does not happen that often.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

4th February 2012

Ok so now it is done. The house is officially up for sale. The estate agents came round this morning, we signed and filled in paperwork, they took measurements and photos. Within a couple of hours, after we had approved the wording and photos, the property was listed for sale and on the Internet.

Yesterday however, we had already received our first viewing appointment, this Tuesday at 6.30. That put the wind up me being so quick, it all became quite real after months of planning.

It is totally different to the last time we moved house in 1998. Then I was in a hurry, we were on an estate, Craig was 2 and I wanted to get away from the noise and the problems we had there

Our shed had been set alight just beforehand and the neighbours were a right mixture, mostly fixing up cars out the front or playing loud music and making lots of noise. I remember having a go at the estate agent after only a week because we had had no viewings. In the end we sold it within the month and completed the move a couple of months after that.

This time, however, we need to drag it out as near to July as we can. Craig has his exams to do and we need Helen to work to the end of the summer term, so we get her pay through the summer holiday. So the quicker we sell the more time we will be with mum and dad, which I am sure neither party wants to be too long.

Have now finished packing all the stuff which was in the loft, along with other things which are non essential the box count stands at 39 and 3 rolls of parcel tape.

Now it all begins.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

2nd February 2012

Feeling low today. I keep look at the figures I have put together for selling and buying and our savings etc and keep wondering if I have done them correctly or not. I accept that we probably will not have any savings left once we move but if I have made a mistake we may not be able to spend what we had hoped to on our new house. By that time it will be too late, neither of us will have full time job so if we needed to loan some money that would probably not be possible.

It might help if I did not keep looking at the figures but I just need to keep checking them in order to reassure myself, however it does not help, just makes me more worried.

It is such a big step, something I have never expericanced before and I am not sure that I am going to enjoy the process. I guess though no one really does anyway.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

1st February 2012

New month and now January is out of the way we have decided it is now time to put the house on the market. The Estate Agent suggested that January was not the best month to sell as it is dark and dreary and everyone is recovering from Christmas.

I am still packing stuff away, things that are not really needed that often but we seem to have so much stuff. I look at things and think " we can throw this" and then I think "oh hold on we might need that at some point". Anyhow we have now 24 boxes packed up and I dread to think what the final total will be.

Talking of boxes how difficult is it to get hold of any. All the supermarkets tell us that due to health and safety they must crush the boxes as soon as they are unpacked and cannot give out to customers. Helen has been bring what she can home from school and last night I had a result whilst dropping Kirsty off at Brownies.

There is a clothes shop warehouse we pass on the way and last night they had put out 12 boxes for the rubbish to collect. I just managed to get them into the car and transport them home. No doubt it will not be long before they are filled.

Kirsty is going to stay at her nans on Saturday night, so Helen and I will make the most of that by going out for the evening. We do not get many opportunities, so last night we were planning where to go. It is typical though that there is nothing on at the cinema. We checked all the films showing and did not fancy any of them. So it looks like we will go for a drink and a meal. We found a nice pub in Potters Bar that looks really nice so we will try that out.