Buyers be warned: I found the perfect London flat ? only to be gazumped at the last
Fri 31 May 2013
fulminating against the perfidy of property developers would ease the frustration of losing my ideal flat.
With rising prices in an increasingly feverish London market and foreign investors piling in, convinced it is a safe
haven for their money, growing numbers of would-be buyers are having the rug pulled from under them, often on
the point of exchange.
Rollo Miles, of estate agent John D. Wood says: Gazumping is commonplace as theres a lack of stock and good
mortgage rates which are encouraging people to move. High demand means that if a property comes to the
market at the right price, someone will be let down.
To avoid being gazumped, purchasers should offer a fast exchange, request the property they are buying to be
taken off the market, offer a non-refundable deposit and move like the wind!
Its not nice, but its a sign of the times, agreed Natasha Voyatzis, of Marsh and Parsons. The lack of good
quality stock in London, particularly up to the 1?million mark, means people will often over-bid on a property
thats already under offer to try to secure it.
The agent is legally bound to present any offer they receive to the vendor - and its the vendors decision on
whether they stick to their guns with the buyer whose offer theyve already accepted.
The moral aspect is difficult. If the new bid is 20,000 or 30,000 more than the existing one, that sort of money
can make a big difference to someones life and can be hard to resist.
Too right! Me? Im back on the flat-hunting