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23 June 2014 @ 08:44 pm
How the other half lives  
Just keep in mind, the next time you apply for a loan and have a valuer come through your property, someone, somewhere, is poking fun at your taste in decorating. *g*

One of the fun parts of my job is the opportunity to look at valuation reports - I'm an inveterate stickybeak with a love for real estate so it's easily my favourite thing at work. Usually we play a game called "They Paid HOW MUCH for WHAT?" in which we attempt to out-do each other with maximum dollars for minimum square feet - the leading property so far is a maisonette in Sydney that went for around $1.8 million and was absolutely tiny.

Today we were playing a variant of that game that involved finding the trashiest looking place. We had one come up where the valuer had commented on the "dog excrement" throughout the house, (and we're not talking slums here, we're talking fairly upmarket house with professional owner), one place with matchbox-sized backyard that was being used as an animal shelter and the valuer noted that the smell of animals would deter prospective buyers; he went on to note that there were five kangaroos and at least one wombat in residence (and then he photographed a wombat hole in the yard, as evidence!) More disturbing to me was the kitchen in which you couldn't see a single surface, there was stuff piled high everywhere you looked.

The winner today, though, was a house that I declined to accept as security for a loan, it was that bad. Unlike the others, the problems went far deeper than mess and smell - this thing had holes in walls and ceiling, and was missing half the bathroom fittings. Actually, "holes" doesn't do it justice - it looked as though whole sheets of gyprock had been ripped away and large portions of the exterior cladding were rotted off. Valuer estimated it would cost at least $25000 to complete essential repairs, and the applicant didn't have any funds to do it or the ability to borrow more to fix it either.

That place beat all other comers hands down, including the one with the green swimming pool (I reckon you could have walked on that water!) and the one with the huge electricity transmission tower right next door.
Current Mood: gigglygiggly
moonlightmead on June 25th, 2014 10:11 am (UTC)
Given that we are mid-purchase, you are not reassuring me here :)

We by-passed a lot of this when we moved into this house: it happened that we moved before selling old house, and our postman rang the bell and said 'You're in a new house! I used to deliver to the old one, too! Are you going to sell it? Because my daughter and son-in-law want to move into that street...'

A friend of mine was involved in something -perhaps installing cables for satellite - that meant visiting a lot of houses. And while it's always fascinating to see how people live and there were some very nice places, he was shocked at the utter squalor and shambles of one or two - used nappies all stuffed down the back of the sofa, that sort of thing. He couldn't believe what went on in some houses, and was baffled to imagine that they were willing to let other people see it.

Of course, the problem with the house with the nappies down the back of the sofa - a heap of them, spilling out over the top - is that if there are nappies, presumably, somewhere in the place, there are children...
miwahni: Pros Ray frownmiwahni on June 25th, 2014 10:31 am (UTC)
Given that we are mid-purchase, you are not reassuring me here :)

Look on the bright side - you could be the high point of a credit assessor's day. *g*

It's amazing, some of the things you see. I had friends once who, if you called in unexpectedly (and sometimes even if they were expecting you) would open the front door a crack, call out "Just a minute" and the slamming of the door would be followed by furious crashing and bashing as they rushed through the house gathering up crap and throwing it into one room. One occasion I can recall her looking for coffee cups, having offered to make coffee; firstly she searched under the lounge chairs and dug out around eight cups with varying degrees of mould inside, then she had to hunt up fresh milk. The first two bottles she got out of the fridge were doing yoghurt impressions, so SHE PUT THEM BACK and kept hunting. I ended up declining the coffee....
Ah, the stories I could tell! They were lovely people though.