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How can we assert some control over this house-buying situation?

(54 Posts)
TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 09:40:09

We're in the process of buying a house. We have had a buyer since October, had an offer accepted on a house just before Christmas, were due to complete end of February.

Our vendor is buying a new build and recently pulled out of the one they were due to buy and have instead reserved one with a completely different builder, now not due to be completed until June. We only found this out by accident so not sure when they were planning to tell us.

The vendor originally said they would break the chain and move in with family so the completion date wouldn't be affected. Now they are saying the house might be ready in May and let's just wait until we exchange to agree completion date. So obviously no intention of moving in with family.

I feel like we are being strung along. We don't want to wait until May/June to move for various reasons. And that means our buyer would have been waiting at least 7 months! How can we get the vendor to agree to an earlier moving date? Do they have us over a barrel?

TellsEveryoneRealFacts Sun 11-Feb-18 09:41:05

Put it back on the market. Either they shit or get off the pan.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 09:44:19

Out what back on the market? It's the house we are buying that is being difficult, our buyer is great

didireallysaythat Sun 11-Feb-18 10:00:20

You tell the agent you're buying from that you're going to start at properties. And you start looking at properties again. Tedious but I don't think you have any other power.

Unfortunately buying from a builder often comes with a different sort of deadline arrangement which can be hard to change. Your vendor moving into rented would be ideal - but that's often a 6 month commitment (12 months around here).

TellsEveryoneRealFacts Sun 11-Feb-18 10:08:04

Pull out then...and go view some more properties.

GreenTulips Sun 11-Feb-18 10:11:54

I'd also speak to the selling agent and say it's the end of February or you're pulling out - ask to see other properties on their books

The owner won't like the thought of having to resell the house - and will maybe offer to move in with family or rent a house

Put you're foot down about what you want

specialsubject Sun 11-Feb-18 10:12:54

Ah yes, the move in with family lie . never happens. Carry on with your sale, keep looking - tell vendor that if they won't exchange by your date, you are gone and they will be starting again.

another20 Sun 11-Feb-18 10:13:26

I have close professional experience with new builds - they often go over estimated completion date by months and months and months. Dont lose your buyer, put the pressure on to agree a completion date that suits you right now. They have plenty of options to stay with family, get a short term (or long term) let or Air BnB etc not your concern. They moved the goal posts when they switched to the other house without consultation with you, assuming you and your buyer would fall in line.

Get tough now and lay down the law - exchange by x date and complete by x date. If they dont comply - start looking around there will be many new properties coming on the market right now.

GreenTulips Sun 11-Feb-18 10:14:04

Also can you move out and charge the owners your rental income for 4 months? Speak to your solicitors

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:20:37

Thanks all. Unfortunately we are in a really weak position in that there are no other properties the same in the area and the vendor will know this. So we really can't pull out.

I will call their agents tomorrow and be firm. I can possibly claim that our buyer is getting itchy feet. I agree that the new build date could end up getting pushed back further and further so we need to pin them down and exchange ASAP.

specialsubject Sun 11-Feb-18 10:23:13

Hope that works.
but if it doesn't, you could be kept hanging for many months.

TellsEveryoneRealFacts Sun 11-Feb-18 10:25:35

I'd suggest that the chain will collapse and they need to rent if they have made a decision that affects so many others. Surely they don't want to lose the sale?

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:25:52

Thing is, I can see them agreeing to an earlier date now, then getting to exchange time and changing their minds last minute. They seem to be completely unreliable people

ReinettePompadour Sun 11-Feb-18 10:31:22

Unfortunately we are in a really weak position in that there are no other properties the same in the area and the vendor will know this. So we really can't pull out

This is irrelevant. You tell them they must complete by x date or you will walk and you go house hunting anyway. You need to show you are willing to pull out otherwise they will continue to drag it out.

As a PP said tell them if they dont complete on x date you will be moving into rented accommodation and that you will be asking them to cover that rent because theyre holding everything up.

You dont have to go through with any of your threats to charge them the rent etc but currently theyre playing you because they can and you need to show that you are not willing to participate in their game.

another20 Sun 11-Feb-18 10:33:44

Be careful what you tell the EA - they could quite easily call the agent you are selling your house with to check this out / talk it through - and set the cat amongst the pigeons.

To negotiate you need to be firm, tell them that you are looking at other properties and start doing it - especially with the agent selling their house. You have nothing to lose as you may need to do this as a contingency anyway if they don't exchange as planned, and your buyer pulls out.

They have a choice then - to work with you - or stick to their guns. I have never heard of a new build coming in ahead of schedule (ie June to May) they always go over - we are not out of the winter yet where any bad weather can delay supplies or stop/delay work.

If you do nothing they will carry on as they are and you could lose your buyer anyway.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:35:11

You're right, Reinette, I need to toughen up!

another20 Sun 11-Feb-18 10:35:34

x-post with Reinette - you have to stare them out on this - give a deadline and follow it through.

GreenTulips Sun 11-Feb-18 10:38:20

You aren't in a weak position!

You are spending thousands of pounds on a property that probably won't attract that many buyers in this current climate

AND putting your house back in the market after a sale fell though will make others wary! I watched the housing market for months before we brought! There were definitely properties that seemed to fall through.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:40:03

Luckily we have a personal relationship with our agent so they are fighting our corner.

Apparently the new house has a roof and has been plastered so I'm hoping it shouldn't be weather dependent. But I would have assumed that these things are only ever associated with delays and aren't usually finished ahead of schedule.

namechangedtoday15 Sun 11-Feb-18 10:40:20

I disagree. If you're not going to pull out because there are no other suitable properties on the market, you're right in that the vendors will know that and so will estate agent. You absolutely can't force them to pay your rent (there's no contractual relationship until you've exchanged) so i agree that you're in a very weak position if you want the vendor's house.

You can still try to be assertive but if the vendors want to extend the timescales, you can't do anything unless you're prepared to walk away. It's a tough situation.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:43:14

That's what I think Namechanged. I reckon our only bargaining chip is the threat of our buyer pulling out. We are currently in a city with a relatively large number of properties to choose from so they could find a replacement quite easily I expect.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:46:26

Plus our buyer is in rented so after us there is no chain - so it's not a buyer that either of us would want to lose

GreenTulips Sun 11-Feb-18 10:46:39

They don't know what you criteria is or if that will change

People pull out for a variety of reasons - change of circumstance etc

namechangedtoday15 Sun 11-Feb-18 10:51:52

I suppose the only benefit with a new build is that as soon as it's ready, it all happens very quickly. From their point of view, they're committed from quite early on (paying quite a chunk as a deposit - do you know if they've paid that yet?) so they won't want the chain to collapse. If your buyers are threatening to pull out then you could feed that back up the chain.

TheChineseChicken Sun 11-Feb-18 10:53:28

I'm not sure what the deposit for her new build is but they've already pulled out of one and presumably lost that deposit so maybe they're not too bothered!

We haven't had any actual threats from our buyer so could only discuss a risk of it happening. I feel so bad for them as they have been so patient.

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