Belfast Telegraph

2015 'saw 200,000 property sales fall through'

More than 200,000 property sales collapsed across the country last year, according to estimates.

Research among 1,000 people who had bought or sold a property in the last five years found 27% of sales had fallen through, according to conveyancing provider LV= Legal Services.

Of these, in nearly half (48%) of cases, conveyancers were blamed for taking too long to exchange contracts.

From its findings, LV= estimates that across the UK, more than 200,000 property transactions fell through during 2015 and in the case of more than 106,000 sales that did not go ahead last year, consumers felt the conveyancing services were to blame.

Of the property sales that fell through, a fifth of buyers (21%) were gazumped - when a buyer thinks they have agreed a purchase only for someone else to come along with a better offer - while in one in six (15%) cases the seller pulled out at the last minute, the consumer research found.

The most common complaints from home buyers who were unimpressed with their conveyancer included poor communication and a slow and ineffective service.

LV= Legal Services found more than a third (35%) of those buying or selling stick with the lawyer recommended by their estate agent rather than trying to shop around.