The government has agreed to publish a call for evidence on the house-purchase system and how it can improve this for customers.
In the Treasury’s Budget document the Chancellor’s office said it wanted to make the process “better value for money and more consumer friendly”.
Around £270m every year in fees and costs linked to buying a property is spent by consumers who then fail to see their purchase come to fruition.
A mortgage market insider said the conveyancing process was usually to blame for long and drawn out transaction times.
“Solicitors contribute to the delays in transactions and the time taken isn’t helpful, as the lenghtier the process becomes, the more likely it is that a purchase will fall through.
“There is surely a way that the seller’s solicitor can have all the basic information in advance to reduce the time taken requesting information,” he said.
Sometimes a disagreement over a valuation or responsibility for fee payment can result in a ‘stand-off’ between the vendor and buyer.
In some cases after a purchase price has been agreed the surveyor may return with a various number of discrepancies about a property to ensure they are not liable for future problems. The buyer will then expect to see a reduction in the purchase price which can mean a lot of further negotiation.
The Department for Communities and Local Government was unavailable for comment.
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