But less well known is gazundering, an immoral practice, becoming increasingly frequent. This is when a sale that has been negotiated, has reached the point of an exchange of contracts, when it is reneged on.  At this very last moment, the buyer substantially reduces their offer, for some spurious reason.  A common excuse is that some works they were proposing to carry out turned out to be much more costly than they had envisaged. However, these costs would have in fact been investigated before a purchase price was agreed. This happens, usually when they know that the Seller is vulnerable or desperate to sell. However, this should not be confused with re-negotiations that may need to take place, following previously unknown matters, brought to light following a survey.


There are however certain things that you can do to reduce the chances of gazundering happening and to prepare yourself, on what to do in such circumstances.


Firstly, try and build a personal relationship with the purchaser, at which time you may be able to make a judgement of their character.  However, if it does happen, make sure you have an experienced Agent at your side, who can act on your behalf and avoid personal conflict, then hold fast to your agreed price.  Remember that no-one considers buying a property unless they really want it and at that stage, they will have invested in legal fees, survey fees and valuable personal time, when they could have been looking at alternatives. Rely on your Agent to handle matters from there on and be guided by their advice. If there are any negotiations to be considered, they will deal with them for you, but don’t be intimidated by threats to withdraw.  If you prepare yourself for this possibility, you will be better able to face up to it and keep calm. Fortunately, it is not yet a common practice, but unfortunately, it is becoming a growing possibility.

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