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When things don’t go to plan – the curse of the property chain

You’re moving house and you can’t wait! Your property is sold and you’ve found the house of your dreams. Let the planning begin!


Moving house can be really exciting – but it’s also potentially very stressful. Especially when you read figures like the recent ones from Churchill which suggest 30,000 property sales fall through before completion every single year.


Figures last year from Quick Move Now showed that the sale fall-through rate was at its highest level for 10-years, with 38.8 per cent of sales failing to make it past the finish line in the first quarter of 2018. Almost a third of the sales fell through because the buyer changed their mind or the seller felt the sale wasn’t progressing quickly enough. A further 30 per cent failed because of things revealed in the property survey, meaning the buyer pulled out. A quarter were due to difficulties securing a mortgage and one in 10 was down to a full property chain collapse.


It can be devastating to find yourself in a situation where the chain starts to fall apart – especially if there’s no issue between you and your buyer, and it’s something out of your control. Or perhaps the issue is further up the chain and you’re keen to keep your sale on track, even if the house you were buying can’t happen in the same timeframe.


It’s a situation we see a lot of at Britannia Turnbulls – over 150 years you see a lot of scenarios! There’s frequently people who have booked in their home removal with us, and then plans change at a late stage. An option many homeowners take is to continue on with their sale, if that’s still on the table, with the view they can then find a property afterwards. We can still help them pack up and move out of their home as planned – putting items straight into a container on our trucks, which is then taken directly to our secure storage unit. The containers are kept there, untouched, until the person is ready to have them delivered to a new property. In the meantime, they’ve lived with family or friends, or taken a short term furnished rental, with just what they need day-to-day. It also puts them in the great position of being a chain-free buyer when they do find a house they want to buy – and they’ve already done the work of packing up – they just have to unpack when they arrive!


But sometimes the whole chain collapses – and it can be with very little warning at all. It’s the main reason we recommend taking out cancellation and postponement insurance.  That way if dates need to be delayed, you’re not out of pocket and don’t have the stress of wondering how it will all be reorganised.


Whatever worries you might have, why not have a chat with our friendly removals team? We can help explain how things might work and what we can do to help should the worst happen. Hopefully we’ll have you happily in your new home in no time!


Need advice? Call our friendly team today on 0113 262 4111.

Britannia Turnbulls of Leeds