Watch out for these things in a seller’s market

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Before a deal is finalised, there can be a number of reasons why a seller might wish to pull out. Whilst incredibly frustrating, some of the reasons can relate to conditions of the local property market or changes that can take place that impact on demand and pricing. Here are some of the most common reasons for a sale not taking place:


Thankfully this has declined but it can still happen in property hotspots across England and Wales and in times of increased demand. Property hotspots like London and Brighton see a lot more gazumping than some other areas, for example.

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Gazumping happens when a buyer gets outbid by another party after their offer has been accepted by the seller. It’s a horrible action and unfortunately is considered as legal in England and Wales. The law is different in Scotland, where you can enter a contract in which the seller agrees not to sell to another party once they’ve accepted your offer. You can then sue the seller if they breach this contract.

An agent who is often involved in gazumping acts can experience damage to their reputation in the long-term, so agents don’t particularly like it either. So, how to avoid gazumping?

Make a fair offer in line with the asking price or market conditions unless there are solid reasons for not doing so (such as damage or a short lease)

Have a mortgage in place already and a solicitor complete all the necessary checks etc to make the process quicker. For Houses for sale Gloucester, visit

Ensure the property has been taken off the market once your offer is accepted.

Withdrawal of offer

At any point until contracts have been exchanged, a seller could decide to pull out of the deal. Some other party may have put in a higher bid, they might decide to keep the property or wait until market conditions improve. The buyer has absolutely no rights to claiming the property before the exchange of contracts. A buyer can ask a seller to help towards any legal fees you’ve accrued but there is no legal obligation for them to do this.

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Other reasons

With any property other than a new build, chances are the property you’re interested in will be part of a chain. This chain is always dependent on the success of other transactions along the chain. If the chain falls apart at any other link, there’s nothing that can be done by you. One option is to invest in buyer’s protection insurance to help alleviate some of the financial risk.


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