Gazumped by seller – can we claim back the money we spent on fees?
Howard Wu from London
30 May 2014
Legal questions and answers
The seller of the property we were buying withdrew from the sale saying it was because our solicitor was being slow.
But now we found out they had accepted a higher offer from another buyer without telling us. We have spent thousands on mortgage arrangement fees, valuation cost and solicitor fees. Can we claim any of our money back from the seller? I know gazumping is legal in England but they didn’t tell us the truth for the reason of withdrawing the sale. Do we have a case here?
The English Law system states that nothing is legally binding on a seller or a purchaser until the formal exchange of contracts has taken place.
Unfortunately, therefore, your buyers could walk away at any time without reason or justification.
Sorry to hear about your situation. For more information about gazumping you can take a look at our article, 'Gazumping - and how to avoid it'.
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