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More than a third of buyers secure house purchase by gazumping

  • 29/06/2021
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More than a third of buyers secure house purchase by gazumping
Gazumping is the most common reason for house sales to fall through in the past year and over a third of house-buyers have admitted to securing their home using the practice.


A report from Compare the Market, which surveyed over 2,000 UK respondents who tried to buy a house in the last 12 months, found that gazumping was to blame for 38 per cent of failed transactions and the most common reason sales fell through.

The fast-approaching stamp duty holiday deadline accounted for 18 per cent of sales falling through.

Gazumping, which is legal in the UK, is when the seller accepts another offer prior to a sale despite having verbally accepted an offer from someone else.

The report found that just over three quarters of prospective house-buyers would consider gazumping if their dream home was already under offer from another buyer and 39 per cent of buyers admitted to securing their home this way.

The report suggested house buyers will pay on average £16,000 above the asking price to secure a property, with around 38 per cent of house buyers confirming they had done so.


Market anxiety


Gazumping is a growing concern for homebuyers, with around 81 per cent of those waiting on their purchase to go through worried that a potential buyer may come in and outbid them.

More than two-thirds of those surveyed who have bought or tried to buy a house would support a law to make gazumping illegal, or to impose better protections to curb the practice.

Compare the Market’s mortgages director Mark Gordon said: “The race to meet the first stamp duty deadline on 30 June has led to an increase in demand for homes, meaning many buyers are willing to pay above the odds and even gazump homes which are already under offer.

“This has left many prospective buyers significantly out of pocket and adds additional stress to the homebuying process, given the average sale takes about three months to formally exchange contracts.”

He said that it was vital prospective homebuyers were as prepared as possible before making an offer, which involved shopping around online for mortgage rates and ensuring their finances were in order.

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