Monday, 28 May 2007

Something Stirs....

I'm only going to whisper this for fear of jinxing the whole sorry affair again...but....It looks like I have buyers!

Real, proper determined ones this time.

They've had their survey done a couple of weeks ago, and I've just sent back all the questionnaires about such stuff as when I last had the boiler serviced, am I taking the lightbulbs, and do any of the neighbours have a penchant for playing Wagner at unsociable hours etc, etc.

I did them a great deal on the price on the basis of an uwritten agreement that we would both endeavour to get the hell on with it, and so far they seem pretty much on the ball....So fingers crossed I could finally be moving in a few short weeks....but don't start asking how many chickens I have just yet!!!

Now they do say you learn something new everyday, and I certainly did on Friday last.
During the buyer's solicitors local search, it transpires that the flat, due to the land it sits upon, is theoretically liable for a compulsory financial levy called "Local Chancel Repairs". Basically this is a hangover from feudal times you were expected to pay towards repairs to parts of the local parish church. Not all of it, but specifically the "Chancel".

Incredibly, in some places, this is still technically in force today, depending on parish boundaries, tithes, and the history of land transactions. It seems the only definitive way to find out if you are "at risk", in a very theoretical way, is to commision a search at the National Archive Office at Kew.

I've had to agree to take out an insurance policy against this teeny-tiny risk in order to keep things ticking over smoothly on the sale front. Luckily it's a very small premium, for up to 25 years worth of £2 million quid cover. ( Some bloody church that'd be if everyone around here had to chip in!)

I grant you that this may all sound laughable, but according to this fascinating article in the Indy last year, one couple got slapped with a bill for £100,000, and insuring against Chancel Repairs is now a £20 million a year industry.....So it really is indeed "an ill wind that blows no man any good."

Especially solicitors and insurance brokers it seems.


angelfeet said...

*whispers* fingers crossed it all goes smoothly and no tithes shall be enforced

mc55 said...

...have crossed my fingers and toes for you that it makes the distance this time - I once sold a house 9 times back in the mid-90's, due to various reasons. It was hell, so I'm feeling your despondency.

Is this third time lucky?

Frankie @ Veg Plot said...

Mel & Steve (my ex-allotment partners) found that their new cottage had the same thing - a church tax and it did hold things up for a couple of weeks but didn't stop the move. I'll keep everything crossed.

lilymarlene said...

Sometimes the law in this country is potty! Still.....glad it looks like it is happeneing at last. Glad for you!

She Who Digs said...

Glad to hear that something is finally happening! Good Luck! SWD

Mildew said...

Good luck, good luck, good luck! I have everything crossed for you.