Thinking of buying 10 Moreton Close, Dukinfield, Cheshire, SK16 5RD? Read this first!
You may have been enticed by an estate agent listing for 10 Moreton Close in Dukinfield. Perhaps you are hoping to buy this house? Perhaps you are planning to put an offer in on this house? Perhaps you are one of the unlucky people who thinks they are in the process of buying this house and you are just waiting for the conveyancing solicitors to do their thing before you book a removal van?
I am sorry to burst your bubble, but 10 Moreton Close in Dukinfield is not for sale. Yes, it may have multiple agents boards outside. It can be found on Rightmove website and a handful of agents websites. There are even videos on Youtube designed to entice you to want to purchase the property. The price varies between £240,000 and £277,000 as the years, recessions and winds of change roll by.
Here for example, is one agents video where the ‘seller’ [sic] Elizabeth Noble describes the house during a guided video tour.
At the end of the video is a very telling phrase. “We will be very sorry to leave this house”. Well, that might well be the case if she had any intention of actually doing so.
She said those words on that video way back in 2009. She isn’t very sorry yet, because she is still there. Better still, she doesnt have the slightest guilt about costing potential buyers thousands of pounds along the way. Prime time messing is a hobby for some people. Read on…. the tale has only just begun.
The tale of Elizabeth Noble (there is a husband, but he seems to have little input, so we’ll ignore him in this article) not selling 10 Moreton Close starts several years ago.
She listed the house for sale with Taylor & Wood estate agents. Taylor & Wood are reputed to have found at least one funded buyer for the house. At the last moment, she pulled out of the transaction.
Then the house was listed with Home Estate Agents. They found at least one buyer who was ready to go on the house. Guess what? Yes, you are ahead of me – she bailed out again!
You may well be sensing a pattern developing here…….
This year, 2012, the house was listed with Red Roof (again – first time was in 2009). They found a funded buyer in double quick time, and guess what? After missing several planned exchange dates she bailed…… again! At the very last moment. The story of this last one is further down.
The house may have been listed with other agents not noted here; we are not sure. What has been established is that to date, Elizabeth Noble has led along the garden path at least five buyers of the house over several years. At what stage in the proceedings she bailed out is not certain with all of them. But, if the last one is anything to go by, it will have been at the very last moment when exchange of contracts would not wait any longer and potential buyers have spent money already.
To pull out of a house sale once might be understandable. Anyone can have a change of circumstances or family issues. But half a dozen? Several agents? Over several years?
Yes, you got it…. NOT selling this house is this womans hobby! It’s what she does. Its more exciting than watching Jeremy Kyle all day I guess. Who knows what her motives for these games are? What is more important is that potential future ‘buyers’ of this house get to know early on that the house at 10 Moreton Close isn’t actually for sale.
Marketing Moreton Close is just a hobby for Elizabeth Noble. Not returning calls, choosing dire, old-school, quill yeilding conveyancing solictors to enable her, going missing, holidaying, filling out property information forms wrong (and its not like she hasn’t had enough practice), not disclosing information leading to further enquiries, etc., is what she will do to delay it to get her kicks. She has it off to a fine art.
Elizabeth Noble thought that her antics would never be disclosed. She thought if she just kept moving estate agents and conveyancing solicitors, she might continue her hobby of NOT selling 10 Moreton Close for years to come. There are two things she didn’t figure on:
The first is that estate agents across Tameside and beyond talk to each other. Because all this time she was pretending to sell her house, she was also agreeing purchases on um… ‘the house she would be moving to’ at other agents. On the last pretend sale alone that she didnt exchange on, she is rumoured to have agreed to no less than FIVE other purchases that she then also bailed on.
That’s five other sellers who thought they had a buyer. Assume those five are an average, multiply those five by the unknown number of ‘sales’ of her house that she has agreed to; that might put twenty or thirty or forty sellers of other houses in a cosy place thinking they had sold their house. Only to later find they had met a prime time messer and hobby ‘buyer’.
The second thing she didnt figure on was meeting a couple of would-be-buyers who are professional landlords themselves, and who own property across three countries. One is a university psychology lecturer, the other is a published author who just happens to be a search engine optimisation expert. Oops!
People who can read you like a book, who have seen it all before, and if you stiff them can put you on page one of Google exposing what you are, are not the *ideal* people to play ‘lets pretend to sell my house and cost some strangers thousands of pounds’ with. Especially when they are pushed for time, need to complete quickly and do not suffer fools gladly. Oh, and you found this on page one of Google didn’t you? Just saying……..
So, for those of you still with us, let’s take a stroll through the course of events that led up to Elizabeth Noble NOT selling her house in 2012.
We’ll start in late January 2012. The house was being marketed with Red Roof at £250,000.
That was a bit optimistic in a major economic downturn, because the house is quite tired and wants some major updating. The garden is quite pleasant though. The plot isn’t terribly large, it is surrounded by tall light-blocking trees and adjacent to some public ground where a constant stream of people take their dogs to empty their bowels.
Let’s hope travellers never find that field or it will be full of caravans and gas bottles too.
So what’s ths house like? This was the opinion of an experienced landlord who has bought and sold dozens of houses:
“The house has a twenty year old boiler the size of a small car on the verge of expiry, the kitchen is past its best and badly designed, the bathrooms – two with no windows and the other with an odd window near the ceiling shaped like a letter box – are almost retro. Plastic shower panels and mud-coloured scalloped toilet seats anyone? And it still has the god-awful white eggshell doors it was built with fitted. Let’s not mention the swirly artex, faux Georgian brass door handles, 1985 light fittings, ‘real coal effect’ gas fire, too-small conservatory and fleurs-de-lis carpeting.”
“It’s clean though (sans a damp smell in one bathroom), and the ground floor feels spacious, but overall it is very tired and very dated. If you are looking for American style fridge freezers, Smeg fires, wood floors, granite worktops and Poggenpohl kitchens with stainless steel fittings – this isnt for you. If you still play “Walk like an Egyptian” on 45 and like dodgy bathrooms with pie crust toilet seats and musty smells, this is right up your street!”
“It is reputed to be four bedrooms. However, if you are larger than Richard Hammond, you will need to knock two into one to make a decent master bedroom. So realistically, it is a three bedroom (and the remaining two could not be described as spacious). Assuming you were born after 1965, it wants at least £40,000 spending on it to bring it into this century and inject some taste into it.”
Accordingly, £9000 was dropped from the £250,000 asking price in a heartbeat, and the agreed price for the buyer featured in this article was £241,000. (£235k or less would have been nearer the mark in this climate, but the buyers were in a rush and didn’t sweat the extra cash to close the deal fast).
The agent delegated the initial viewing to the seller (probably knew it wasn’t worth turning out), and Elizabeth was pleasant and courteous (well practiced you might say). The best aspects of the house were highlighted and the worst ones glossed over. Overall, the house feels spacious downstairs, half the garage needs converting to make an office/study (which most people need) and the driveway is way smaller than the “five or six cars” stated on the video – think one van and a car in comfort.
For an identikit Barratt-style commuter box thrown up in the early 1990’s, it is amongst the better ones if you have a big budget to update it.
However, it isnt really for sale as we will find out……..
The would-be buyers – despite being experienced property professionals in a corporate environment – by buying in personal names, qualified for the chancellors first time buyer stamp duty holiday that finished on March 24th 2012. That means at this level there was no Stamp Duty if the sale was completed by March 24th. That meant a saving of £2410 which allowed them to bid above *actual* value to make a quick deal. A once only opportunity…..
This was conveyed to Elizabeth Noble to which she replied:
“Oh, it absolutely MUST be compeleted by March 24th as we are going to Australia for a month and the house MUST be sold by then!”
Home and dry, yes? An impecunious pensioner couple itching to move out. A funded, younger couple with a toddler itching to move in. A price agreed. Conversation revealed the vendors had a large extended family, so somewhere to stay would be no hardship till they found a new place with cash in their pocket. The deal was done!
She gives would-be buyers her email address (which she doesn’t reply to) and her mobile number (which she seldom answers either). Even asks for information on storage and van removal services. The woman and her hubby are good to go, yes?
Um… no. It’s all a game.
Comments are enabled at the end of part two.