UK Government Could Restrict Gazumping to Address Stressful House-Buying

The UK government has revealed plans to restrict gazumping. Gazumping is when a seller accepts a greater offer from a new buyer after already accepting a sale.

Sajid Javid, the Communities Secretary, has announced an eight-week review of the property buying process.

Sajid Javid stated: “We want to help everyone have a good quality home they can afford, and improving the process of buying and selling is part of delivering that.

“Buying a home is one of life’s largest investments, so if it goes wrong it can be costly. That’s why we’re determined to take action to make the process cheaper, faster and less stressful.

“This can help save people money and time so they can focus on what matters – finding their dream home. I want to hear from the industry on what more we can do to tackle this issue.”

The UK government also published a survey of 2,000 new home buyers, which reported that 69 percent of sellers and 62 percent of buyers experienced stress and worry as a result of setbacks.

The report also revealed that almost half (46 percent) of sellers were worried about buyers changing their minds after placing an offer down and nearly a quarter (24 percent) would employ a different estate agent if the buyers had to do it all over again.

The Department for Communities and Local Government said that almost a third (32 percent) of sellers and 28 percent of buyers were not happy with the solicitor of the other party.

The plans for a review was criticised by John Healey, the Shadow housing secretary. “This is a government out of touch and out of ideas,” stated Healey. “After seven years of failure, ministers still have no plan to fix the housing crisis.”

The house-buying process was described as “outdated and flawed” by Which? Magazine’s Alex Neill.

“Buying a home can be one of the most stressful experiences in life, with sales often taking too long or falling through, with some consumers losing substantial sums of money.

“The government must put consumers first, ensuring that estate agents deliver a better service for both home-buyers and sellers and that the conveyancing process is simplified.”

From Sunday, the call for evidence will run for eight weeks.