What to do... vendor delaying sale

(7 Posts)
AsMuchUseAsAMarzipanDildo Mon 17-Aug-20 19:17:37

Hi, all advice appreciated as my head hurts from thinking this through.

Have a cash buyer for our house. They need to move quickly (for university). That side of the move is all lined up, waiting to exchange.

We would ideally buy our onward purchase simultaneously, so can port our mortgage without early redemption fees etc.

Had offer accepted to buy our onward purchase days after accepting our own. We said about our need for quick completion due to mortgage porting, daughter’s schooling, husband’s job. They’re retired and said “not a problem, if it comes to it we can rent and break the chain”. So again we worked really hard to quickly finalise our mortgage offer, survey, searches etc. But the vendors were always really slow to send documents from their end. We’d be told “the solicitors posted them today”, but they wouldn’t arrive with ours for weeks.

Understandably our buyers are now fed up and wanted to organise a date for exchange and completion... and our vendor has done a complete u-turn. They’re not willing to rent and the house they’re wanting to buy is dependant on that vendor finding a house - they haven’t even started looking and have no intention of doing so “while there’s still a local outbreak of covid in the area they’re hoping to look in [Blackpool]”. So basically not even looking in the near future.

I really don’t want to lose our buyer - so am resigned to going into rented. But feel like pulling out from the place we’re buying as I just don’t trust them. We’ll have no choice but to pay several £000s in early redemption charges and be renting indefinitely... and they really aren’t in any hurry to complete - despite initially agreeing to this when we made our offer. I’d rather have the certainty of waiting for another property without an onward chain to come up, than deal with their deliberate procrastination. They’re early retired, so no schools or jobs to move. I thought about offering to pay their rent (in case it was simply that they now couldn’t afford to rent), but DH thinks that still doesn’t guarantee they won’t drag their feet and leave us without a house to move to and redemption fees on the day in exchange. Arghhhhhhh angry

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Murmurur Mon 17-Aug-20 19:34:02

Unfortunately people saying they will move into rented and actually doing it is a whole different thing. Don't take it personally, it's pretty common. I think I would be thinking along similar lines to you - may as well have a clean break and not feel tied to this potentially infinite wait.

I would suggest you give them an ultimatum that you will start looking for alternative purchases unless they exchange on x date. They are likely not going to be too worried about losing you as a buyer. However you needn't completely burn your bridges on this house. You've already spent the money on the paperwork. If their vendor does get themself sorted before you exchange on another house, it could all come back together if you want it to.

WoolyMammoth55 Mon 17-Aug-20 19:43:52

Yes I think @Murmurur makes good points. It's useful to do all you can to salvage the situation by reminding them that you offered in the belief that they were telling the truth about moving to rented. Explain that your situation remains the same, you need to exchange by X and complete by Y, and that if they're no longer willing to do this you'll be either walking away or dropping your offer to recoup mortgage redemption and rental costs. Then let them come back to you with an answer. Either they'll get a move on or they won't - either way you'll have given it your best shot! Best of luck.

AsMuchUseAsAMarzipanDildo Tue 18-Aug-20 08:34:54

Hi both, thanks for your advice. I’m thinking I’ll give them a last chance and say that either we exchange in September or we’ll start looking for alternative properties and will need to drop our offer to recoup mortgage and rental costs. Trying to be philosophical about it and see it as happening for a reason
- if it falls through, maybe it wasn’t meant to be and we’ll find something better.

OP’s posts: |
pingster Tue 18-Aug-20 08:41:13

I think if you remortgage less than 6 or possible 12 months with the same bank you can get early repayment costs back - we did this recently as moved into rented to break the chain, purchased again within 6 months and then we got our early repayment fees refunded and the new mortgage on the existing rate. Might be worth looking into?

Wildwood6 Tue 18-Aug-20 08:51:10

We had a similar situation but instead with buyers of a property we were selling- a retired couple willing to go into rented because they 'loved the house so much'. As @Murmurur said when it came to the crunch they actually didn't want to go into rented at all. Its an easy thing to say, but I suspect when they started looking at the actual costs involved, the credit searches, the upheaval of moving twice etc, it all came as a bit of a shock which they had totally underestimated. We ended up selling to someone else. I think your DH is right to be wary.

AsMuchUseAsAMarzipanDildo Tue 18-Aug-20 19:19:19

Thanks again for the replies. It looks as if we might be able to get some of our early repayment charge back if we get another mortgage with the same company within 6 months. Although our financial position by then is likely to be very different (I’m leaving my career for health reasons), which was part of the reason to buy somewhere cheaper.

I spoke with their estate agent today and even she sounded annoyed with them. It’s becoming apparent that they’re getting cold feet about moving unless it’s in 6months+ time and entirely at their convenience. She has tried to convey to them that they risk losing us as buyers and might not find another or get the same price when they finally are ready to move. But they refused to discuss further. We have 3 weeks till exchange on our house, so figure we’ll leave it open in the meantime and start looking for another purchase and rental. But if they’re no further along in 2 weeks, we’ll have to pull out. I can cope with a few weeks stop-gap in the chain if things are moving and there’s an end in sight. But not willing to sit around waiting indefinitely for covid to end before even starting the legal process of buying. My gut says that all the procrastination means they’ll eventually decide not to move at all.

We’re moving to a new area, so maybe renting (as financially crap as it is) will give us more information on which exact villages, roads etc to wait for. Just a nightmare to organise with a small child in tow.

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