>House sale fall through

The latest data and analysis from independent home buyer, Quick Move Now, has revealed that the number of house sales falling through before completion is on the rise.

According to the figures, there was a house sale fall through rate of 38.8% for Q1 2018 - the highest Q1 rate seen in the last ten years.

Q1 fall through rate:

2008 - 35.9%
2009 - 22.4%
2010 - 32.4%
2011 - 26.6%
2012 - 28.4%
2013 - 20.5%
2014 - 28.9%
2015 - 22.6%
2016 - 21.6%
2017 - 34.9%
2018 - 38.8%

Danny Luke, Quick Move Now's managing director, commented: “The start of 2018 has been difficult for the UK property market.

Although we can attribute some changes in the fall through rate to the usual seasonal peaks and troughs, ongoing Brexit uncertainty and strict lending criteria are certainly contributing to increased market caution and fewer successful property sales.

Shortage of supply also remains an issue in many areas. This means those that are keen to move, or have no choice, find themselves in a very challenging market.”

Of the property sales that were unsuccessful, 46% were attributed to the buyer changing their mind or the seller feeling that the sale was not progressing quickly enough. A further 23% fell through because either the buyer or seller wanted to renegotiate after the initial deal had been agreed, and more than one in ten of the sales that fell through did so because the property survey highlighted issues that caused the buyer to pull out of the sale.

Strict lending criteria is also playing a role, with 11.5% of sales that fell through doing so because the buyer was unable to secure sufficient funding from their mortgage provider.

The remaining 8% of failed house sales were the victim of a collapsed property chain.

Mathew Wood, Managing Director of Orchards Estates added "This is an often overlooked part of the selling process when sellers choose their estate agent. It is essential to know exactly how the transaction will be managed by the agent. Effective sales progression can reduce the fall through rate by half. This is why every one of our sellers has a dedicated Home Move Co-ordinator and why our fall through rate is significantly lower than many other agents. This saves our sellers not only time and stress but also reduces their overall moving costs. A lot of the high fall through rate can also be attributed to the poor service many sellers receive from the cheap conveyancing factories. It is essential to choose the best solicitor - not the cheapest - as an aborted sale can quickly become more expensive in the long run."