The new construction industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the UK, but not all are thrilled with the new, “flexible” contracts that some of the agencies have come to expect.
The new contract that came out in February for an 11-bedroom house in Manchester, which had been due to be completed in February 2017, has now been extended until December 2020, after which the house’s price will have to be re-assessed.
This will leave an extra £8,000 of mortgage debt on the buyer, meaning the new buyer will have an additional £1,000 to pay off if it can’t meet its repayments in full.
The deal has led to a backlash among local residents and tenants who say it’s unfair for a building company to hold on to a house that has been built for them and then have to wait years for it to be sold.
The new house, which is set to have a total of 12 bedrooms, will cost around £2.8 million to complete, which could be a lot of money for a family of four.
But one property agent, who asked not to be named, told the Manchester Evening News that the extension of the contract was due to the fact that some contractors “didn’t get the message that this was a flexible contract.”
“It was just a way of keeping people on the books, not taking the money out of the building company’s pockets,” he said.
“It’s not a way to encourage people to be more sustainable in the future.”
“I’ve had one client in my building who has been offered a £6 million home, and she’s not going to do it.”
Mauricio Alvarado, an agent with the firm, said that the agency had had no complaints about the extension and was happy with the result.
“We’re happy with it,” he told the newspaper.
“We’ve had a few complaints about it, but it’s a standard contract.
It’s not like we’re looking for money out in the market.”
He added: “It doesn’t make sense that it’s going to take two years for the building to be finished, and then the buyer gets a new house for £2 million.”
The only problem is that the buyers didn’t understand the deal they were getting.”‘
It’s a bit unfair’For the owner of the house, the change was a good move for them.”
She added: ‘It’s probably a bit fair. “
But I’ve had to pay £4,000 a month in rent in the last year, so I don’t think it’s worth it.”
She added: ‘It’s probably a bit fair.
I’m not sure I can afford to pay that rent again.’
She added that her mortgage repayings would have been much lower had the house been sold.
“I’m still paying about £10,000 per month in my rent, so that’s a lot less than I would have if it had been bought for £6.5 million,” she added.
The contract extension comes as more and more properties are being bought by private equity firms, many of which are based in the US.
One of the biggest investors in the sector is US-based hedge fund Citadel, which bought a majority stake in a home in Los Angeles last year for £1.4 million.
A spokesperson for Citadel told the BBC: “We do not comment on speculation about the future of a property.”
However, there is some speculation that private equity may be eyeing up properties in Manchester in order to get a foothold in the construction industry.
The City of Manchester has a long history of being home to a number of private construction firms, including M-1 Architects, a firm founded by Peter Gillett.
The firm was purchased by Citadel last year.
In a statement, the City of London said: “The UK government’s Building Code (2005) requires contractors to provide a minimum number of habitable rooms and a minimum floor space of 12.7 square metres.”
A minimum of two habitable rooms is required, plus one accessible room, and one floor space.
“However, these requirements have not been enforced in all cases and we have seen some private construction companies take advantage of the loopholes to construct their own homes.”
In 2015, the construction sector contributed £3.6 billion to the economy, bringing in £1 billion in wages and £2 billion in benefits.