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Viewing a property with an offer already accepted by the vendors

(74 Posts)
TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:23:24

We viewed a property at the weekend, is within our budget and the area we would like to live in.

That evening, I contacted the vendors & asked for a second viewing this weekend coming.

A couple of days later I noticed that the property was now listed as "under offer" on Rightmove.

When I got back in touch with the vendors, they admitted that they had accepted an offer but were more than happy for us to come back for a viewing.

I'm completely new to this property buying game, so please bear with me.

To my mind, if they've accepted an offer that's kind of it, isn't it?
I guess they want us to view again, so that we hopefully offer & then they can decide whether ours is better than the one they already have on the table.

Is this normal practice to have a property under offer but viewings are still going ahead?

If it was me & I'd had my offer accepted on a property, I'd be quite annoyed if the vendors continued to have viewings & possibly reject my offer later down the line.

So, forgive my stupidity, but is this how the property game works?!

OhNoNotMyBaby Thu 23-Jun-16 16:26:27

Yes, it's how it works. The vendors are obviously hoping to get a better offer, which is why the house is only 'under offer' and not 'sold'. The prospective buyers should be aware of the fact that their offer is only 'under consideration' so I wouldn't worry about it too much. If you like it, and want to pay more for it than the other buyers have offered, go ahead.

bonjovigirl Thu 23-Jun-16 16:30:37

It might be that the house is 'under offer' while the buyers get their paperwork (proof of funds, mortgage agreement) together, hence why it is still being marketed? Guess it's ok if all parties know that is going on. Still, would make me nervous about the vendor if they are still entertaining viewings while I think my offer is accepted.

fieldfare Thu 23-Jun-16 16:32:53

It's devious.
They're holding out and letting you view to see if you're going to offer too in the hope that a bidding war will ensue.
I would walk away. If they're behaving in that way at this stage they are likely to be a nightmare to get to completion.

TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:33:32

Ok I figured as much.

My husband recently sold his batchelor pad and the day he accepted an offer, all other viewings (first & second viewings) were cancelled, even for the following day.

As far as I knew, he didn't request for any of that to happen, it was the agents driving it.

Re the price, we know what our upper limit is, but obviously do not know what offer has been made by the other potential buyers.

We are really keen on the property and I guess we will offer on it after the viewing- we'll offer, keep in mind of maximum, and possibly go up to it if necessary.

MissBattleaxe Thu 23-Jun-16 16:34:04

I think if an offer has been made and they haven't accepted it, then it's fine to have viewings, but if they have accepted an offer, then it's wrong, but legal, I think.

Hastalapasta Thu 23-Jun-16 16:35:41

Go for the second viewing, offer if you like it. We had several offers fall through due to the new mortgage guidelines so were happy to keep on doing viewings! Nothing is final until the exchange of contracts. Unless you are in Scotland...

Jeremysfavouriteaunt Thu 23-Jun-16 16:36:10

I have just sold a house and about to exchange on another, I wouldn't deal with a vendor who behaved like this. It doesn't bode well for their honesty or future behaviour.

whois Thu 23-Jun-16 16:41:19

It's not devious if everyone knows that the deal is.

Like 'I accept your offer but I'll continue to market and accept other offers until you provide proof of funds, at which point I will stop marketing and take your offer forwards'

TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:44:33

We are definitely not up for a bidding war!
We know our maximum limit & would walk away if it's deemed not good enough.

Even if the vendors can 'only' achieve their asking price, they will have achieved a massive profit in a relatively short space of time (I'm talking a 6 figure sum...we are in London here).

Minniemagoo Thu 23-Jun-16 16:44:58

Having bought and sold a number of houses I have come across this. Usually if the offer is a good bit below asking the vendor can accept the offer and advise the purchaser that they will continue to allow viewings until exchange to se if they can get a higher offer. If you view and want to offer you just need to specify that the offer is contingent on the vendor removing the house from further marketing. If your offer is good enough then they will do this.
I would go ahead with viewing and offering.
There is nothing stopping the current purchasers insisting the vendors stop viewings if their offer is accepted.

TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:47:34

The thing is, I don't know if everyone knows what the deal is or what the vendors have said to the other buyers.

To be honest, in some ways it doesn't matter- we will offer the minimum that we think is reasonable and then negotiate up to our limit if necessary.

If it's not enough then so be it. There are lots of properties on the market in SE London at the moment and quite a handful have been on for at least a month or so, and have recently been reduced.

Cinnamon2013 Thu 23-Jun-16 16:49:58

It depends on the other buyer's circumstances. For example we offered on a house when we had no yet put ours on the market. Our offer was accepted in name but EA was clear that they would continue to market it and arrange viewings until we had an offer on our place. It went to someone in a better position in the end, which seemed fair enough. EA was honest with us throughout. However if that's not the case, then they are cheeky buggers

TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:50:37

I think I am a but uneasy with everything as, with my husband's property, we didn't have any of this sort of thing going on.

He accepted an offer for the asking price, property was marked sold STC and viewings ceased immediately. Then things proceeded to exchange without any drama or bidders coming in at the last minute.

TurquoiseDress Thu 23-Jun-16 16:52:20

This is getting ahead of the game, but if we were to offer & it is accepted- we would insist that the property been taken off the market ASAP.

I think we almost have a slight distrust for the vendors already, which probably does not bode well!

Jeremysfavouriteaunt Thu 23-Jun-16 16:52:53

They didn't offer that information up though did they? If you are open that you are doing that it's slightly different.
I don't see how you can accept an offer, memorandum of sale drawn up and surveys instructed if you are actively still marketing it.

FuzzyOwl Thu 23-Jun-16 16:54:37

We accepted an offer on our house when we were selling but our buyers hadn't even put their house on the market, so we did say that we would continue with viewings and if somebody else put in another offer and was in a position to start to move forward we would go with it. However, we were honest about this and the fact that we were so keen to move we would have accepted a lower offer if it meant things moved quicker, so it isn't always about the sellers wanting more money.

Just make sure that if you decide to go for it the sellers won't allow someone else to gazump you.

kirinm Thu 23-Jun-16 16:57:48

Some agents put up 'under offer' whereas some say 'sold' in my experience (which is in SE London v recently. I think it's a shitty thing to do to be honest.

OurBlanche Thu 23-Jun-16 17:04:04

Crikey! It is perfectly normal practice. Vendors get bitten by buyers who are not in a position to move, so they leave the property on the market until they are assured that the money is in place even if the potential buyers haven't sold.

In other places, in other circumstances, agents remove from listings when an offer is accepted. That is also normal practice.

If you want to know, ask. The agent will tell you. If you don't ask they will assume you are not at the point of making an offer.

You cannot blame the agent or vendor is you didn't ask any questions. You made an assumption...

jaffajiffy Thu 23-Jun-16 17:08:04

We just accepted an offer on our place but said it would go back on the market if the buyer doesn't instruct solicitors or book a survey within a week. It's not unreasonable for the seller to have some contingency in place as you can be left high and dry. We aren't accepting viewings right now but would do if nothing happens. We just put conditions on things moving along at a reasonable rate and are up front with buyers.

Jeremysfavouriteaunt Thu 23-Jun-16 17:16:33

It's not normal practice in my experience, if it's got to the stage of being marked on the websites as under offer, then solicitors have been instructed and mortgages applied for.

It's completely different to having several offers on the table and continuing to accept viewings until people have sold.

You can't ask someone to pay surveyors, put a formal mortgage request in and instruct solicitors if you are actively marketing it in my opinion.

Both sides are equally likely to mess around in the house buying business in my experience, that's the way it is.

FuzzyOwl Thu 23-Jun-16 17:31:03

When we accepted our offer but said we would still allow viewings, our house didn't show as under offer or sold STC because as far as we were concerned we were not progressing with anything until our buyers had a buyer. Once they did, we took our house off the market and would not have accepted another offer.

OurBlanche Thu 23-Jun-16 17:31:19

Then your experience is limited, Jeremy.

Buyer puts an offer in, vendor accepts in principle, Under Offer board may or may not go up, offer is confirmed, SSTC goes up.


Buyer puts an offer in, vendor accepts in principle, buyer requires or agent's common practice means property is no longer available for viewing, Under Offer board may or may not go up, offer is confirmed, SSTC goes up.

Both routes are normal practice. Even Phil and Kirsty acknowledge that, they both advise that you ask that all viewing is suspended when you put your offer in!

Jeremysfavouriteaunt Thu 23-Jun-16 17:34:46

I don't consider my experience limited ourblanche but at least I am not rude...

Jeremysfavouriteaunt Thu 23-Jun-16 17:37:34

Does the person with the offer accepted just sit around waiting in case a better offer comes up?
Spends money on instructing non refundable valuations, instructing solicitors.

I am pretty sure that taking viewings while not informing prospective purchasers that an offer is already accepted is devious, but then estate agents are always honest aren't they? hmm.

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