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How long for court to force the sale of a house?

(15 Posts)
Calico1 Mon 15-Dec-14 18:49:46

I posted this under a different topic but think this might be better under legal matters....

Long story but I am trying to buy a house and the vendor is obstructing the sale...

His ex partner has already got an Order of Sale on the property via the court some time ago which forces the sale (there are a number of debts charged against the property). The vendor accepted our offer back in August but still hasn't instructed his solicitors to start the legal process and is being v evasive with the estate agents. We have a cash buyer for our house and now we need to get the process moving or we will lose our buyer. It looks like the ex will have to enforce the court Order - the court can apparently take over the sale of the property but I have no idea about the process.

Does anyone have experience of how long this takes?

I'm grateful for any information.

MaryWestmacott Mon 15-Dec-14 18:57:06

I can't help you with this, but I'd really be looking round other properties this week unless this is your absolute dream home.

Calico1 Mon 15-Dec-14 19:01:01

It's the only property in the village that we can afford to move to so I'm keen not to lose it... if there were other house options we would have given up on this one long ago.

Greengrow Mon 15-Dec-14 20:07:27

You need to pressurise the seller to get on with those court proceedings. They should give their spouse 7 days to allow valuers round on pain of instead the court taking over and having to pay all the extra legal costs of that.

Is the property in the name of the seller and their spouse or partner or just in one of their names and were they married?

Calico1 Mon 15-Dec-14 21:08:45

Hi, I understand that the property is in the name of the vendor only - his ex partner (not married but several kids) is owed substantial funds from him and so the property is to be sold to pay those debts. Enforcing the court action is a last resort but seeing as the vendor has not instructed a solicitor in nearly 4 months since agreeing to sell to us, I think it will be the only thing that makes it happen. Apparently he did the same thing a couple of years ago and the buyer gave up, which is why she then sought a court order to force the sale of the property....

Calico1 Tue 16-Dec-14 07:59:17

Anyone been through this?

Greengrow Tue 16-Dec-14 09:35:08

So she probably has a court judgment requiring that she be paid the debts and when that was not paid thinks of a way to enforce the debt such as seizing his car, sending in bailiffs or in this case getting some kind of charging order over the house and then asking the court to order the sale of it. You should check if she has registered that charging order over the house at the land registry to ensure he does not sell the house and not pay her.
I think this could take quite a while as the courts do not like to make people homeless so they might well give him lots of last chances.

Collaborate Tue 16-Dec-14 11:24:35

If there is already an order for sale it might not take that long for her to get an order cutting him out of the loop. The principle is established that the house will be sold, so contrary to what Greengrow says (which would be true if she were one of his creditors forcing a sale), if she's a joint owner with him she can get it listed fairly promptly if you threaten to pull out of the purchase.

Calico1 Tue 16-Dec-14 12:42:04

Thanks both, yes there are CCJs charged against the house on the land registry document, though she is not a joint owner.

He won't be made homeless as he owns other properties and there is already an order of some sort stating that he can not live there at the house in question. I think he has already had a lot of chances....problem is that he says the is going to co-operate and then doesn't....

Greengrow Tue 16-Dec-14 18:20:18

Perhaps try to give him a deadline and say you want copies of all court application notices, hearing dates and rulings so you can see on a daily basis what is being done by him and his solicitors to force the sale.

MeMyselfAnd1 Tue 16-Dec-14 18:28:25

If he is living there, and he doesn't want to sell, you are in for a long one because the court can ask him to sell, but he can stay there for years just by dragging his feels (ie. not replying to your solicitor, not being at home at the times entry is needed to do surveys, ignoring signing papers, etc. He may even destroy it before you move in))

If I were you. I will start looking for another house, if he gets more "responsive" before you find another house/loose your buyers, fantastic. But if he doesn't, at least you can put it behind you.

MeMyselfAnd1 Tue 16-Dec-14 18:29:08

Dragging his heels, not feels, obviously...

Calico1 Tue 16-Dec-14 20:15:19

Yes, Greengrow, I think deadlines are needed, and in the meantime I'm keeping an eye out on what else might be out there as I don't think I can manage the stress of it for months and months!

Roomba Mon 22-Dec-14 07:59:11

Sounds stressful for you. Is he actually going to be getting any of the proceeds of the sale once the debt is paid off? Just wondering whether lowering your offer price by £1k a week until he complies would be an incentive to him... grin No idea whether it would actually be possible to do that or maybe it would just create more stress and paperwork, though!

Calico1 Sat 27-Dec-14 13:55:57

I like your thinking Roomba! I have no idea whether he'll get anything once the debts are paid off but it might make him move a bit faster....

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