Friday, 6 December 2013

Under Offer shouldn't mean Under Consideration.

So far one of our properties has gone 'under offer' three times and still there's no sale.

It seems that some property buyers make offers the way politicians make promises. Without any idea whether they can or even want to make good their offer/promise.

I do understand, of course, that there will always be good reasons for house sales to fall through. But all too often it seems that making an offer is little more than a ploy.

A gambit designed to buy the buyer more time to consider the property.

There should in my view be a price to pay for messing with sellers in this way.

And the simplest price would be an offer deposit, only repayable if a survey, search or legal enquiry throws up a genuine and significant issue.

Of course, sellers can insist on this now. It's not unknown. But according to my solicitor it can take two weeks and a fair few hours of a lawyer's expensive time to concoct one of these agreements.

That is typical legal world self-interested bullshit. There should be a standard agreement that can be signed the same day as the offer.

This might stop some of the ludicrous 'about-turns' from buyers that I've experienced over the past year.

In one case, for example, the buyer decided that the lack of a bath (it has a shower, in case you're wondering) was sufficient reason to back out. Two weeks after agreeing an offer!

This absurd time and money wasting behaviour is not only frustrating, it borders on deliberate dishonesty.

Currently our 'wreck' in W8 is under offer for the third time. The 'buyer' agreed a five day exchange, briefed a solicitor, made all sort of reassuring noises (it's a company) and then......disappeared for two weeks. The decision makers are apparently in the US. But this is a blatant lie as we know that the person concerned arrived back in London earlier this week.

Whether we sell it isn't actually critical to me. I'm more than happy to redevelop the property myself.

I'd just like to know one way or the other.

So, I've decided to put something else under consideration.

Naming and shaming the sham buyers I come across.

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