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Moving in and renovation works

  • 09-11-2021 11:48pm
    Registered Users Posts: 4 Pinkhaze

    We've gone sale agreed on a semi detatched built in 1978 which was rented up to recently and looks okay at face value though the bathroom/kitchen could do with modernising. It has laminate floors and carpets that we planned to make do with for the next few years. We are awaiting the surveyor report but they have told us they can only make basic comments on electrics / plumbing and will advise having these things checked by professionals.

    We will have very little left by the time we complete the sale, and I am concerned there will be a lot of things such as rewiring, replumbing etc required which we can't afford at present.

    The cost of the morgage is the same as what we pay in rent so we had hoped to move in and do with the place as it is for the next few years and potentially take out finance to do while insulation, new windows and potentially a small extension.

    Is this a bad idea , should we hold off until we have extra money to cover these things? We are saving well at the moment and could get the money saved for things like rewiring in the next 6 months but everyone is telling us you should do these things whole the house is empty


  • Registered Users Posts: 379 ✭✭ Mascher

    We were in a similar situation and ended up moving in and living in the house for about a year before doing anything. By then we knew exactly what we wanted, which was completely different to what we said we wanted when we moved in. We knew the house by then, how it flowed, what way the light came in throughout the year, what was ok to live with and what had to go etc.

    Also, with the trouble getting materials and tradesmen at the moment you'll probably be waiting a long time before you get the work done regardless.

  • Registered Users Posts: 629 ✭✭✭ houseyhouse

    Unless the wiring is very unsafe, you can live with it. Rewiring is a big, disruptive job that involves damaging all the walls and upstairs floors. If you can manage it, you’re best to do minimal work before moving in, knowing that work will likely get undone, then do a big job in a year or two when you have the money saved.

    We were in a similar situation: 1970s semi-d, previously rented, needs work. We considered knocking walls and things before moving but then with all the lockdowns we just did some basic stuff ourselves before moving in. We painted the walls and ceilings, pulled out the (disgusting) carpets, painted the upstairs pine floorboards, did a few very cheap bathroom upgrades. Biggest expense by far was a kitchen from the Swedish superstore, which we installed ourselves. We did have to pay an electrician for the kitchen too. Kitchen was around 4-5k total but worth it because we would have struggled to have normal family life in the previous kitchen, it was so bad.

    Living here over a year now and about to get an architect for stage 2, which will be the full renovation, rewiring, plumbing, upgrading BER etc. plus extension. We have a much better sense of the house now and what we need from it. Also have seen what others in the estate have been able to do with theirs. But we have had to live with it is a semi presentable state (which is easier when a pandemic means people don’t really come into you home!) with a horrible bathroom, noisy stairs, drafty windows, and only one single solitary socket in our whole living room for a year (did people not own lamps in the 70s??!!).

  • Registered Users Posts: 4 Pinkhaze

    Thanks both for your responses, will you live in the house during works? And how will you pay for works?

  • Registered Users Posts: 661 ✭✭✭ starbaby2003

    We lived in our house for six years before renovation! We did do windows, heating and electrics though. We saved and then did a complete retrofit. Worth waiting for. If we had some immediately our budget would have been considerably smaller and we would be still looking to make upgrades.

  • Registered Users Posts: 531 ✭✭✭ brownbinman

    can be done but isn't pleasant. we moved in and I had to ship wife off when work was being done as she was pregnant and we got placed knocked, rewired, replumbed, insulated and load other crap

    At one stage had no internal doors, carpets, kitchen, walls knocked, blinds/curtains and electricity in only 2 sockets for a time. not nice but is what it is

    all depends if you can put up with it. I did it in summer mind you, wouldn't have done it in winter

    Best advice we got when we bought was to live in the house and see what needs to be done after a while. Was brilliant as we saw things we would've otherwise missed

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  • Registered Users Posts: 629 ✭✭✭ houseyhouse

    We’ll move out for some of it. We have small children so we can’t really live on site with them. It could be difficult to find a suitable rental so we’ll probably have to move in with family. We have parents nearby and luckily they are very accommodating and have several empty bedrooms.

    We’re hoping to avoid borrowing. We have some savings and an inheritance. There are also grants to help with the retrofitting costs.