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Old 02.11.2015, 13:10
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Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

Hi, We are considering making the move from rentel to home owner, but im getting a little nervous...

We have wanted to own our own home (being English) but where we live there is nothing going in all the years we have been here - well nothing in our price range
Now our German friends are moving out of thier flat (the next building to ours) to a house - still in the village so our kids will still be in the same class... We are not massively social friends, we may do something occasionally together and will always talk at school functions but not 'besties'.

They have given us first option on thier flat as they know we have been looking for ages, so my question is what is 'correct' in this instance, can we negotiate the price at all? Im not talking about making a stupid or ofensive offer - we can afford the price they have asked but only just (we have to borrow a little from family) and there would be nothing left for anything.

Is it expected to put in a lower offer? - in the UK and if we didnt know them, we would definalty but we know them.....

Its hard to establish what is the going rate is in our area as there is never anything for sale to compare except the massive houses well over 1.5m

I know the bank will do thier own assesment but will they also advise what to offer too?

Any advice with dealing the buying from friends would help me here - they are a lovely family and id like to keep them as friends! (espcially as they are moving to a house with a pool )
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Old 02.11.2015, 13:29
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

Can you not ask the bank if you can use their valuer for a valuation, then you will have a decent bargaining point.
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Old 02.11.2015, 13:30
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

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Any advice with dealing the buying from friends would help me here - they are a lovely family and id like to keep them as friends! (espcially as they are moving to a house with a pool )
Don't ever do business with friends. Business is Business.
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Old 02.11.2015, 14:44
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

Speak to your bank. Without getting their valuation and mortgage options it's pointless even going into any kind of discussions with your "friends".

Once you've had the discussion with your bank (maybe even one or two more other banks), then you are in a good position to make an informed decision.

You can then go into the discussion of "The asking price is a lot higher than the banks valuation", "We can't afford the asking price", "Are you prepared to move on the price" etc.

Depending on how you conduct the negotiations, there is no need to worry about the friendship, they have gone through the same process themselves and probably don't mind you having the discussion with them.
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Old 02.11.2015, 15:25
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

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Don't ever do business with friends. Business is Business.
Why the hell not? If everyone is agreeable to the price (or close to it), I can't see any issue, especially seeing as there is little else on offer. It's not as if they're going into business with them.
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Old 02.11.2015, 15:31
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

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Why the hell not? If everyone is agreeable to the price (or close to it), I can't see any issue, especially seeing as there is little else on offer. It's not as if they're going into business with them.
If there are any problems at a later date you will live to regret it.

Also the friends will feel they got a bum deal when the one next door sells for 100k more next year or you will think you paid too much when one sells for less.
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Old 02.11.2015, 15:34
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

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If there are any problems at a later date you will live to regret it.

Also the friends will feel they got a bum deal when the one next door sells for 100k more next year or you will think you paid too much when one sells for less.
That would be the same if they sold to anyone. As long as proper due process is done, I can't see it being any different to buying/selling to a complete stranger. As the OP says, it's not as if their best friends.
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Old 02.11.2015, 17:24
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Re: Buying a Flat from a friend- advice

I agree with fatmanfilms - there is bound to be some hard feelings somewhere down the line. By the same token, I refuse to work for friends or hire friends - only exception was my realtor (who is a good friend) when I bought my place, but she helped me for free as I help her for free with her business taxes - I am not allowed to do any paid work for anyone outside my employer, but I can help up to 5 friends/family for free in any given year.

I think mixing business with personal relationships (friends, family) is a recipe for disaster.
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