Home Property Finance & InvestmentMortgages The dangers when selling a property

The dangers when selling a property

by LLP Finance Reporter
12th Sep 23 4:07 pm

Hello Mark


Quickmove Properties has highlighted the main ways in which selling a house can go wrong, and what the underlying causes might be, to help sellers avoid falling foul of the most common mistakes and mishaps. 

Last-minute buyer indecision 

First, it’s important to acknowledge that the successful sale of a house is not always in the control of the seller. Buyers can change their minds at the last minute, or experience a radical and unexpected change in circumstances that means the purchase is no longer viable. This often results in a collapsed sale.

Faced with last-minute buyer indecision, sellers will sometimes drop the price in order to keep the sale on track, but it’s good to be careful in this respect because some savvy buyers might be trying to gazunder you, intentionally umming and ahing so that you offer a panicked price reduction. This is especially true if the change of mind is happening just before signing the contract. 

Last-minute buyer financing issues

Also out of the seller’s control is the financial status of the buyer. If they’ve got issues with financing on their end, it can delay or even end the sale process. 

The best way to avoid this is to progress the sale only with a buyer who can already demonstrate a mortgage agreement in principle and can show proof of funds up-front. 

Unrealistic valuations in a falling market

This one is very much in the control of the seller, and it’s one of the most common mistakes committed on the housing market, especially in a market with falling house prices. 

Asking too much for a property can delay finding a buyer, or result in no buyer interest whatsoever. It’s estimated that homes marketed at a higher price than their eventual sales price take around two months longer to sell than accurately priced listings. 

When choosing an agent to represent your sale, be cautious of the one who gives the highest valuation – they are probably just trying to win your business. 

Moving day mishaps

If moving out on the same day as home sale completion, stress levels can already be high as sellers prepare take metre readings, clean the property and do last minute packing. On top of that, 11th hour drama can still occur such as technical glitches on final money transfers meaning keys cannot be released, leaving all parties in limbo! 

Buyers using Part exchange avoid such problems using their License to Occupy. This means they keep the keys to their existing property for up to 2 weeks so they can move out at leisure without the pitfalls of everything happening all on the same day.

Choosing the wrong estate agent

On the subject of agents, there are more things to be mindful of. Because not only should you tend to question the agent who offers the highest valuation, but also the one who charges the lowest rate of commission. 

Instead of being wooed by their financial offerings, do your research and find out which agent has the best reputation, online reviews, the best track record, and the strongest knowledge of the local market.

One great way to gauge agent competence is to consider how quickly they sell the homes on their books and what percentage of the asking price they achieve. If sales are timely and close to asking price, you’ve got a good agent on your hands. And a good agent makes a massive difference to your selling experience. 

Buyer’s surveyor finds major issues

This one can be a real problem for sellers. If the buyer’s surveyor identifies major problems with the property, the sale can collapse completely. Things like Japanese knotweed, subsidence, and severe water damage can, at the very least, cause major delays and force you to fork out for the remedial works, or knock thousands off the asking price.

As a seller, it’s important to be proactive with any serious issues within your home. Trying to hide issues such as Knotweed or subsidence can land you in hot water and will always be found during the survey process. It’s well worth spending the money upfront to address these issues before you list your home on the market, rather than having to do so at a later date which can delay your sale and, in many cases, cause it to collapse.  

Fall-throughs in the chain

Any of the above issues can cause buyers to flee and your sale to fall-through. On top of this, if your sale is tied up in a chain and one of the other sales in that chain falls-through, it can, and often does, set-off a domino effect that eventually results in your own sale falling-through. 

How do you avoid being vulnerable to a breaking chain? Find cash buyers who aren’t reliant on selling their current house to fund the purchase of yours. Part exchange companies like Quickmove Properties can step in to fix a broken chain by buying the property which lost their buyer.


Finally, and as a word of caution, beware that scammers operate in the housing market and, while the chances of them targeting your sale are slim, it’s always best to be vigilant. Always check who you are emailing or sending sensitive information to. If you’re asked to do anything that seems slightly odd, just take a moment to confirm that it’s legit by speaking to your agent or conveyancer. 

Sales Director at Quickmove Properties, Mark O’Dwyer said, “Selling a home on the open market can be a complex and stressful journey. It can take a long time to find a good buyer and then longer still to complete the conveyancing process. Worse still, at any point along the way, something can go wrong causing the sale to collapse. 

It’s an archaic process that is showing little sign of improving, even with the abundance of tech products now on offer. 

This is one of many reasons why home movers use hassle-free property part-exchange. Silver downsizers especially enjoy the speed, certainty and convenience of selling their bricks and mortar property in part-exchange for a suitable onward property, such as a modern park home. PX provides a concrete time frame and guaranteed cash offer, with peace of mind that things won’t go awry or fall apart completely.”

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