Wendy’s Ramblings on Property and being a Landlord

By Wendy the Other Half

Or how we became initially accidental Landlords

Nearly 17 years ago I moved in with my other half. We had another child and though we had three bedrooms the house was a little top heavy, so with two young children and a dog, living space was in short supply.

My mum was living across the road in my family home with my brothers. She decided it was too big and expensive to run just for the three of them so offered to sell it to us. Now this was an opportunity not to be missed. Here was a house that I knew who had lived in it since 1950. My parents had purchased it when I was eleven years old and I had played in the, highly dangerous, old shop / front room from being a very young child. I couldn’t bear to think of it being sold outside of the family, it was a fantastic house to grow up in and we wanted our children to have the same opportunity, so our house went on the market.

The market was a little slow, but we soon had an offer. Solicitors engaged searches done etc. Mum had found a house she wanted to buy so all hunky dory so far. Then the woman withdrew her offer, no reason offered, no negotiation, no house move. Gutted.

Now I had had a very inspirational teacher at primary school who taught us many things, which I’m pretty sure weren’t on the curriculum. He explained about inflation and interest rates and how the banks worked and how sometimes you could beat the banks by investing wisely eg. Property. This stuck in my 11 year old brain and never left it, probably also strengthened by the fact my parents had bought wrecks and done them up.

So here we were house on the market and wide open to the whole dizzying rigmarole again. I suggested that maybe we ought to be proactive and take control of the situation, that way we wouldn’t be losing most of the money we’d already spent on fees. After a lot of thought (other half being the more sensible / cautious one) he let himself be talked into it. I’m not saying it was an easy option, it was a little bit frightening but we’d done the sums and were sure we could do it, but it would need us to tighten our belts, not going out at weekends for a while but we decided it was worth it for our and our family’s future.

So trips to the bank and permission from existing mortgage provider to let our property, we moved the whole 20 yards to our ideal family home. I’ll do more on what we’ve done either through want or nessecity at a later date. (you can see what’s not been done on the idostuff site)

A few years later a house across the back lane came onto the market. My heart sank, we’d had lots of trouble over the back lane in the past and we didn’t relish the prospect of going through the whole rigmarole with new owners. Then a solution appeared, we needed more space for storage (other half had rapidly outgrown the garage as not only does he do stuff, he buys it as well)and we could stop any land disputes ever happening again. So we viewed on the morning of my brother’s wedding, the sums seemed to add up (vendor wanted a quick sale) so that was property number 2.

Another two houses soon followed,all houses have very happy tenants who all seem to want to stay put.

Now, the exciting one. We didn’t intend buying another property but an absolute bargain came up. It was to be sold at auction. We’d never even been to an auction before but we knew if we could get it at the right price it was a no brainer as it had four bedrooms, which are like hen’s teeth in this village. Auction night soon came, we’d set our limits and were living in hope. As the lots were sold our hearts started thumping as our lot got nearer. Then it was our turn, one bid and the hammer fell. All over before we’d had time to draw breath. So that’s how we came to get number 5 (and in all fairness that’s part of the reason I’ve still no windows in).

2 Responses to “Wendy’s Ramblings on Property and being a Landlord”

  1. Hi Andy
    You HAVE been busy since my last visit!
    Very interesting reading all the write-ups.
    I see your better half has made a beautiful effort with nice pics of the building of the Stained Glass. Well Done. BUT, Andy, I suspect , …. well, … uh hum.. have you managed to,… well no, it must be installed in the door, .. by now. 😀
    What a view that cottage has, …. we spent a week in Scarborough years ago and whitby was picturesque. The old railway line along the coast was magic!
    Thanks for taking the long hours to give us spectators a real treat.
    And thanks for the videos that inspired me to make my own doors.
    HipHip Hooray!

  2. Hi Gordon,
    Good to hear from you again. Only one stained glass panel is finished, it’s now being displayed in the kitchen window as a daily reminder the other one needs doing. As they say the best things in life are worth waiting for! For once it’s not me that’s holding up a job.

    The Whitby cottage is taking up plenty of time at the moment but it’ll be worth it when it’s done. I have to keep my self from stopping working and just staring out of the windows.


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