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2022 has been the year of the property fall through. Almost every month, a new set of statistics has been released showing the number of sales that have been aborted is on the rise. This year, the sell house process has been hit by an increasing number of buyers who have walked away from a purchase before the deal has reached exchange

Why are property sales falling through?

The cost to sell a house or flat is substantial and consists of numerous bills that, during an economic crisis, can make a move unaffordable. Right now, the biggest threat to sales is rising mortgage rates. Even buyers who have a mortgage offer in principle and have had their property offer accepted are being affected.

In a new twist, buyers are finding their home loans are being withdrawn or made more expensive during the transaction, as lenders respond to the Bank of England’s continuing interest rate rises.

For other buyers, delays to exchange and completion mean their mortgage offer expires during the transaction and the new deals they are offered come with unaffordably-higher rates. With buyers’ monthly repayments becoming hundreds of pounds more a month before they have even exchanged, many are left with no choice but to withdraw from their purchase.

Other fees to sell a house that are making home movers think twice as the squeeze on finances intensifies include mortgage arrangement fees, EPC costs, gas safety certificates, stamp duty rates, estate agent fees, removal costs and conveyancing fees.

Don’t forget, when selling to Open Property Group, we pay many of the fees associated with selling a home. With us, there are no estate agent fees, EPC costs, gas safety certificate fees or solicitor fees to pay.

Do I need a solicitor to sell my house?

On the last cost, many buyers and sellers who want to save money will question whether they really need a solicitor to oversee the transaction, especially as The Advisory puts good-quality conveyancing, where the purchase is freehold and being bought using a mortgage, at between £1,000 and £1,500, and around £800 to £1,000 for straightforward sale. Those buying or selling a leasehold property can expect to pay even more.

Although there is no legal requirement to use a solicitor or licensed conveyancer when buying or selling a property, it is strongly advised that you involve an experienced professional. Those that follow the DIY conveyancing path often discover it takes them far longer to progress the transaction than it would if they’d used a professional, while the complex nature of property transactions can lead to costly mistakes.

Fall throughs affect landlords too

As our sister company Landlord Buyer reported earlier this year, 1 in 4 landlords who are regaining possession of their buy-to-let are taking back the property so they can sell it. There are many reasons why landlords feel now is a good time to dispose of a single buy-to-let or sell a property portfolio.

One of the most common is to sell property due to tax implications, especially as investors are now seeing the final and devastating impact of zero mortgage interest tax relief on their bottom-line figures.

And like buyers, landlords are not immune to mortgage rate rises. Those on standard variable rate, tracker or just expired fixed rate mortgages will be balancing higher repayments and more stringent lender stress tests with yields, loan-to-values and increased running costs. For many landlords, selling property fast is the only way to stop a buy-to-let losing money.

If your chain has collapsed and you desperately need a buyer – or you need an express property sale with a guaranteed purchaser and a guaranteed exchange date - contact Open Property Group. Alternatively, you can get a quick and free cash offer online.

Published on 10th November 2022

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