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Tuesday, 12 May 2009

New Neighbours and other New House Ups and Downs

Well we completed on the house on Friday so are now officially homeowners. Being a repossession there's a lot of cleaning/tidying up to do before we can move in. We're making the front garden a top priority in order to make it obvious that there are people who own the house now.

On Friday when we went round to check a few things after picking up the keys I noticed a plastic play house in next door's front garden. Later on I thought, "Wait a minute! Wasn't there a playhouse lying on its side in the garden here when we originally looked round?" When I went and checked in the garden I found a patch of bare earth in the lawn and also the door and a window to the play house still in our garden. We're not sure whether/what to do/say about it since we know they took it and part of it is still in our garden.

Little Girl absolutely loves the new house. Every time we go there she goes hyperactive and starts running round in and out of all the rooms. On Saturday when we took my mum and brother round she dragged my brother all around the house and garden multiple times - I think she was pleased to have someone who wasn't too busy doing other things to take round. She also absolutely loves this walk in cupboard in our bedroom:

(Don't you just love the decor.) On Friday she kept requesting to be shut into it which we did as it was useful to have her contained while we were doing other things and she seemed to really enjoy it. (It's not as bad as it sounds - the cupboard has a window so it's like a very small room.) We eventually had to take her out as she decided to make a start on redecorating for us by removing the wallpaper. She has also requested it as her bedroom although it's actually too small even for a cot.

We did think initially when we phoned the gas and electricity company on Friday that we would have to pay off debts of just over £200 (about $300) but it looks like we won't have to. They are coming this week to reset the meters and give as new payment cards. Usually it is much more expensive to pay using meter cards but we are switching to Ebico as soon as we can. Ebico is a Christian non-profit energy company who on principle charge the same rate to all their customers regardless of their payment method. We switched to them over two years ago in our current house and have never had any problems with them.

When we got the keys we were only given keys for the front door and the padlock for one shed so we have to get a locksmith to change the lock on the back door. We (or rather Hubby) sawed the padlock off the second shed door and we replaced them both with new padlocks. It's all a bit dusty and dirty in there but there are a few things which will be nice when they are cleaned up such as a little play table and a doll's pushchair.

The bins are full but I phoned the council and the day for emptying happens to be when Hubby will be there all day for all the different people who are coming to do things. They alternate between the rubbish bin and the recycling and garden waste bins but we only usually put our rubbish bin out once a month anyway and it will be nice to have a proper bin for recycling instead of a hessian bag which allows paper to blow all the way down the street.

Once we completed I gave the months notice on the current house to the estate agent by e-mail. Yesterday they phoned back claiming that we could only finish on the same day of the month that the tenancy started so we would have to pay up to 30th June and not just to 7th. I told the lady that none of the previous places I'd rented had rules like that and she said it was written into our contract but she would see if the landlord would give permission for us to finish early. I've checked through the tenancy agreement again and can't see anything other than that we have to give one month's notice. Hopefully the landlord will agree to the end date we have given as we don't really want the hassle of arguing about it but it would be over £250 (about $350) extra so we aren't going to agree to it when it isn't in the contract.

We haven't been able to do much cleaning yet since we don't have electricity or water but they will hopefully be sorted out on Thursday and then we can make a start. Based on the condition of the carpets we decided it would be worth our while to buy a carpet cleaner. We decided to go for this one (although we paid a few pounds more to get it from Comet so that if it goes wrong we have a real shop to take it back to). The previous owners apparently smoked and had a dog so I should be able to report back on how well it works.


Rachel said...

Congrats! I have been waiting for word that it was complete.

Will you give us a tour of the new home?

Saved Sinner said...

Thank you.

Not sure how long it'll take us to get it sorted out. I think I'll have to do "before" and "after" pictures.

brightandnew said...

Just de-lurking to say congratulations on the new home,I hope it will be a place which will provide you with many happy times and memories.

In your position, I think I would just let the playhouse go. Sure it was as good as stealing to take it from the garden, but people do see the gardens of empty houses as fair game (when we were in the middle of moving we 'lost' a beautiful plant I wanted to take with us, a rabbit hutch and run along with a trampoline from our garden - I was so mad at the time), but it is best to let it go and not start off in a new home with bad neigbour feelings on either side. These things escalate so quickly :(

Enjoy your new home and I look forward to a future tour.


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