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Stuck in a chain and seller is being difficult (or is it us?)

(20 Posts)
SadEyedLady Mon 24-Nov-14 13:53:14

Two months ago we had an offer accepted on a property. Since then the seller has been quite evasive and frustrating - it took several weeks to book a time for the survey and and she has only just agreed to let us come round for a second viewing, after initially saying it was 'too soon' to be thinking about it (six weeks after the offer was accepted and several months since the first viewing). We've had no direct communication with her, it's all been through the agents.

Our buyers are keen to move quickly but she is refusing to even instruct her solicitors until the chain is complete (she has found a property, but the chain extends a couple of levels above that). Her estate agent says this is the normal process - however everything my DH and I have found online and elsewhere suggests that people generally instruct solicitors once a buyer has been found.

Is it normal to refuse to instruct solicitors until the chain is complete? Or are we being pushy and unreasonable? We're so worried about losing our buyers, whose mortgage offer expires in February. To top it off, we have totally fallen in love with the house, I would go as far as to call it my 'dream house', so I really don't want to pull out unless we are really being messed around.

tonyshapiro Mon 24-Nov-14 14:05:30

Nope, she's being totally unreasonable. I'd be putting pressure on the agents to push her.

HaveToWearHeels Mon 24-Nov-14 14:19:51

Totally unreasonable, while she is faffing about the solicitor could be getting searches and other paperwork ready. She is delaying for some reason. I would contact estate agent and say something along the lines of unless she pulls her finger out you will need to review your options !

Spindelina Mon 24-Nov-14 14:27:30

What are your options? Would you be prepared to go in to rented?

SadEyedLady Mon 24-Nov-14 14:33:31

Thanks - it does seem pretty unreasonable to us! Her estate agent is backing her and saying that we shouldn't be expecting her to act sooner, and this is standard behaviour in a chain, which is why I asked the question.

Spindelina - we could move out into rented, it would be tricky as we have a dog and a lot of furniture, and given her apparent disinclination to get moving I'd be worried she'd pull out and leave us high and dry.

HortenMarket Mon 24-Nov-14 14:52:55

I hate to say it but I think this chain won't complete. The estate agent is talking rubbish. Once your offer is accepted you instruct solicitors and they get on with all the searches etc as they can take time. I would say that even though you love this house you should get back out looking and you should also make your position clear to the estate agents. Sounds like someone up the chain is being a pain and the only real way to ensure chains complete is by applying pressure and moving everything along as quickly as possible. The longer they wait the more likely they collapse. A little pressure is a good thing and also you may search again and find an even better house.

OwlCapone Mon 24-Nov-14 14:56:48

I don't think the chain will complete either. There is one difficult link and it's a fairly long chain.

The fact that you see this as your dream house complicates it though as you can't just look elsewhere.

grumpyoldgitagain Mon 24-Nov-14 15:03:12

Is the house away from other similar properties and your dream house because of it

Or does it sit in a street of similar houses were there may be another with the same layout

May be that a neighbour is thinking of selling and just didn't know it until you knock on the door and ask them

May be a case of knock knock, sorry to trouble you but we have been looking at the houses for sale in this street but the people selling are being a pain, we know you don't have a for sale sign up but as your house is a similar external layout is it something you would consider, because if it is we may be interested in having a look round and buying

SadEyedLady Mon 24-Nov-14 15:12:05

Thanks for the advice, I think I'm coming to the realisation we may have to let this one go... it is a gorgeous house and there are a couple similar nearby, so we could try them perhaps! We're in a position to move quickly, which to most people is an advantage.

Hoggle246 Mon 24-Nov-14 15:17:16

It's scary but I'd call her and her shitty EA out on it - she instructs or you're walking away.

Ime it starts like this and gets worse. Buying and selling is stressful enough without dealing with people who just can't be bloody straightforward.

If you give an inch now, trust me they will take a mile later

RaphaellaTheSpanishWaterDog Mon 24-Nov-14 16:45:39

She definitely sounds totally unreasonable to me!

I understand what it's like to feel you might be losing your dream house - this happened to us a few years back when we found an amazing unrestored Victorian 'villa' but were pipped at the post when a friend decided to buy it and open a business there.

Ours was on the market but not yet SSTC and despite our best efforts to get it sold we lost out. However, despite there only being three houses of the same design in the road (and nothing similar in the whole town) by chance another friend told me her FIL owned one of the other two and was thinking of selling. It was a different kettle of fish as it had been divided into four flats that were currently tenanted.

Long story short, we had to wait a bit longer for the tenants to leave but in the end we sold ours and bought the friend's FIL's house privately. Eventually with a lot of hard work we turned it into an amazing family home.

Don't lose faith OP, things can and do work out for the best, and it may well be worth doing a leaflet-drop to the similar houses nearby as your vendor does seem somewhat flaky.....

Do hope it all works out for you!

specialsubject Mon 24-Nov-14 18:03:21

she should have instructed solicitors the day she accepted your offer. She doesn't want to move.

issue an ultimatum and start house hunting.

HappydaysArehere Mon 24-Nov-14 20:30:18

Does she really want to move? Some people get cold feet when they have to do something positive and irreversible about it.
If you really wanted to sell you would pull out all the stops. I have heard of people like this and they are a real pain in the preverble.
Her agents are just afraid of losing the business. I would contact them and say you are forced to withdraw your offer unless the sale is put in the hands of solicitors forthwith and you hear to this effect.

SadEyedLady Tue 25-Nov-14 11:53:42

Well, we have cancelled the survey and pulled out. I'm feeling gutted as we loved the house so much, but realistically cannot take months more of being messed around - I just have no confidence in the seller or the agents. Realistically the house was larger than our needs, and we were really stretching ourselves to buy it, so in the long run I think it's for the best. So sad though.

specialsubject Tue 25-Nov-14 12:28:08

painful decision - but I think the right one.

my crystal ball (which is as valid as anyone else's smile ) tells me that it will all work out in the end for you and you will find a better house that you will love even more. Without the financial strain.

SadEyedLady Tue 25-Nov-14 12:37:21

Thank you - I really hope so!

Hoggle246 Tue 25-Nov-14 15:51:09

I'm sure that's the right decision, although I'm sorry for you. It's horrible when people in the chain behave badly, but at least you don't have months of potential stress looming over you now. For all you know, by the time this seller instructed her solicitor she may have had decided her house has increased in value etc. she sounded tricky.

SadEyedLady Thu 27-Nov-14 10:08:28

Had a call from the estate agents yesterday - in order to stop the chain collapsing one of the vendors higher up has agreed to move out, so the chain is complete, and our seller will now get moving. So... we have gone back in! I'm a little apprehensive about being screwed over, but we love the house so much, and by far the easiest option is to stay in the chain. Fingers crossed it all works out. Hopefully with pressure applied from all levels of the chain she will do what's needed.

Hoggle246 Thu 27-Nov-14 14:19:04

Ah well that's good news! I suspect you also gave your seller a little scare which is no bad thing. And hopefully the agents will stop dicking about now too!

Blu Thu 27-Nov-14 16:09:31

Keep the pressure on and say you expect to hear from her solicitors have contacted yours to say they are acting for the sale within the next 2 days.

I think she was trying to be mean and not incur any expenditure until the last moment.

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