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    • tallsmithy
    • By tallsmithy 12th Oct 17, 10:29 AM
    • 23Posts
    • 4Thanks
    tallsmithy
    Estate agents mislead us
    • #1
    • 12th Oct 17, 10:29 AM
    Estate agents mislead us 12th Oct 17 at 10:29 AM
    I'm a FTB with my OH and we are about to exchange on a house. The experience has been a very stressful one as the estate agents (Purplebricks) and to some extend also the seller, have misled us by stating on the listing that the property was CHAIN FREE, when in fact it isn't.

    We found out about 5 weeks into the process, when we suddenly get immense pressure from the seller/Purplebricks to get an exchange date ASAP or the chain(??) will fall through! Luckily our solicitors have managed to get everything tied up in time to prevent this.

    What I'd like to know is can we take action against Purplebricks for what essentially was false info in their advert? I've read an article on hoa.org.uk which clearly states estate agents:

    Not leave out important information that potential buyers need to make informed decisions. They must give all the necessary information so a buyer can make an informed choice when it comes to making an offer or instructing conveyancers or surveyors

    and also:

    Not put undue pressure on any party to act quickly – to put in an offer, raise their price, skip the survey or exchange contracts

    Don't know if its worth pursuing with the Property Ombudsman, but if compensation is achievable I'm well up for it!!!
    Last edited by tallsmithy; 12-10-2017 at 10:34 AM.
Page 2
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 12th Oct 17, 1:32 PM
    • 1,135 Posts
    • 1,338 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    I am buying a property managed by PB and they told the vendors I was chain free but what I told them was I was single with mortgage offer in place and didn't need to sell my house to raise the deposit...not the same thing
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    I'm not sure I completely follow?

    Do you need to sell your current property in order to raise any of the funds needed to make the purchase?

    If yes, you're not chain free. If no then you are chain free.
    • pretamang
    • By pretamang 12th Oct 17, 2:39 PM
    • 47 Posts
    • 31 Thanks
    pretamang
    If the only effect of this wrong information was some hassling and inconvenience then you've gotten away very lightly.

    When I was a FTB there was no chain and no rush on either side: EA was still calling and hassling me to get things moving, even though they were moving along nicely with no problems and everything went smoothly.

    On another property the EA advertised as Freehold; it turned out to be Leasehold with so many complications it couldn't be sold at all in the end. £2500 spent on fees etc., plus having to start over = tough luck. The EA was only passing on info from the seller.

    You can't get compensation from an ignorant seller, they are not regulated and until exchange not contractually liable for anything. There are plenty of ignorant sellers out there all you can do is beware and brace yourself!
    • Akahotpot
    • By Akahotpot 12th Oct 17, 3:00 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 19 Thanks
    Akahotpot
    Do you need to sell your current property in order to raise any of the funds needed to make the purchase?
    At the point of my offer I didn't know , I just presented the situation I was in at that point

    As it turned out yes I did need to sell mine first
    • chappers
    • By chappers 12th Oct 17, 3:01 PM
    • 2,650 Posts
    • 1,500 Thanks
    chappers
    Go ahead make your complaint, if it makes you feel better, but as to any compo, you will have to prove loss and I suspect go further than just through the ombudsman
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 12th Oct 17, 3:15 PM
    • 1,135 Posts
    • 1,338 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    I am buying a property managed by PB and they told the vendors I was chain free but what I told them was I was single with mortgage offer in place and didn't need to sell my house to raise the deposit...not the same thing
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    That's fairly ambiguously worded, if you ask me.

    It's also unlikely that you would have a mortgage offer at the beginning of the process. Most likely an agreement in principle, which would be subject to a full application and valuation of the property. Only then would an offer be produced.

    At the point of my offer I didn't know , I just presented the situation I was in at that point

    As it turned out yes I did need to sell mine first
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    It may have been helpful to make PB aware that there was a chance you may need to rely on the sale of another property.

    It's fine not to need to sell a house to raise the deposit for exchange. But if you do need to sell a house to have the balance of funds on completion, then you're not going to exchange until the sale is ready too.
    • saajan_12
    • By saajan_12 12th Oct 17, 3:30 PM
    • 833 Posts
    • 547 Thanks
    saajan_12
    I am buying a property managed by PB and they told the vendors I was chain free but what I told them was I was single with mortgage offer in place and didn't need to sell my house to raise the deposit...not the same thing
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    At the point of my offer I didn't know , I just presented the situation I was in at that point

    As it turned out yes I did need to sell mine first
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    So a miscommunication / misleading info from you.

    Your mortgage offer was based on selling your property (and thus paying off your existing mortgage. So your deposit (often used to mean purchase price - mortgage) depends on this mortgage and so depends on selling your property.

    If you didn't sell your property, you'd be offered a lower mortgage due to lower affordability, so would need a higher deposit which you didn't have.
    • NineDeuce
    • By NineDeuce 12th Oct 17, 3:39 PM
    • 263 Posts
    • 212 Thanks
    NineDeuce
    "Estate agents mislead us"

    In other news, water is wet.....
    • bertiewhite
    • By bertiewhite 12th Oct 17, 3:48 PM
    • 613 Posts
    • 599 Thanks
    bertiewhite
    I've read an article on hoa.org.uk which clearly states estate agents:

    Not leave out important information that potential buyers need to make informed decisions. They must give all the necessary information so a buyer can make an informed choice when it comes to making an offer or instructing conveyancers or surveyors

    and also:

    Not put undue pressure on any party to act quickly – to put in an offer, raise their price, skip the survey or exchange contracts

    Don't know if its worth pursuing with the Property Ombudsman,
    Originally posted by tallsmithy
    So print that statement off, tell the EA they've broken the law and ask what they're going to do about it?

    Any Ombudsman's job is to break a deadlock situation so they will have expected you to speak to the EA first.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 12th Oct 17, 3:55 PM
    • 1,135 Posts
    • 1,338 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    "Estate agents mislead us"

    In other news, water is wet.....
    Originally posted by NineDeuce
    This is not going to be the last time where a seller tells an EA they will vacate/go in to rented etc, then change their minds and decide to buy.

    Not exactly an EAs fault that a vendor shifts the goal posts, is it?!
    • kingstreet
    • By kingstreet 12th Oct 17, 4:28 PM
    • 32,054 Posts
    • 17,156 Thanks
    kingstreet
    It's 'I was misled'.

    That's the past tense from the verb to mislead.
    I am a mortgage broker. You should note that this site doesn't check my status as a Mortgage Adviser, so you need to take my word for it. This signature is here as I follow MSE's Mortgage Adviser Code of Conduct. Any posts on here are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as financial advice. Please do not send PMs asking for one-to-one-advice, or representation.
    • Akahotpot
    • By Akahotpot 13th Oct 17, 1:32 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 19 Thanks
    Akahotpot
    That's fairly ambiguously worded, if you ask me.
    How ?

    I answered the questions asked honestly ,PB used the information to sell me to the vendor as chain free
    At the end of the day they are the market professionals not me,I only found out they had said I was chain free when the offer was accepted and I messaged the vendor direct
    They very reason I am on this board is to understand the process better because straight answers are hard to come by
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 13th Oct 17, 1:43 PM
    • 5,002 Posts
    • 4,350 Thanks
    00ec25
    How ?
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    by definition you are not chain free if you cannot pay for your next property until you sell your current one.

    having enough cash to pay a deposit is not what was being asked and your comment was thus misleading. Surely you could see what was being asked even if it was your first time? Can you buy without having to sell your current house: yes or no? Simple question.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 13th Oct 17, 1:50 PM
    • 1,135 Posts
    • 1,338 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    How ?

    I answered the questions asked honestly ,PB used the information to sell me to the vendor as chain free
    At the end of the day they are the market professionals not me,I only found out they had said I was chain free when the offer was accepted and I messaged the vendor direct
    They very reason I am on this board is to understand the process better because straight answers are hard to come by
    Originally posted by Akahotpot
    Because you failed to mention that you may need to sell a property in order to go ahead with the purchase.

    It is also unlikely that you would have had a mortgage offer, at the time of making an offer for a property via PB. You would probably have had an AIP/DIP, which is not the same thing as a mortgage offer.

    In my view it is a stretch to describe those employed by PB as 'market professionals.' In fairness that goes for a lot of 'traditional' estate agents too!
    • sulphate
    • By sulphate 13th Oct 17, 2:03 PM
    • 1,086 Posts
    • 3,186 Thanks
    sulphate
    We completed on our sale in August and whilst we were always honest with our EA in that we needed to sell our house to proceed with another purchase, they mistakenly advertised it as being a chain free house. I did point this out to them when the ad came out, but my email must have slipped through the net as it was never changed. I believe that our EA just made an honest mistake rather than deliberately trying to mislead buyers.

    For any compensation you would have to prove loss - and you haven't lost anything - and probably also that they intended to mislead you. You have no proof of this.

    Chain free doesn't guarantee a smooth and fast transaction. Our sellers were chain free so we were in a small chain of 3. You'd think it would move along very quickly but it took 6 months due to various delays.

    Welcome to the world of house buying and selling - it's always a stressful process, as you've found out. Believe it or not, this transaction will be the smoothest one for you - wait until you have to sell and buy at the same time!
    • tallsmithy
    • By tallsmithy 13th Oct 17, 2:40 PM
    • 23 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    tallsmithy
    It now comes to light that our vendor, is in fact waiting for the sale of his partners property to go through, who we didn't even realise was in the chain??? Its utterly disgusting that this guy hasnt been forthcoming regards this info, which I had to squeeze out of the estate agents! So now we are not ready to exchange after all! Oh the irony!

    I've been advised by my Sol to threaten to pull out, unless he finds alternative accommodation/move in with his OH, so that we can complete! I'm willing to make such a threat as I'm sick of wasting more money on rent! Plus he's mortgage FREE!!!

    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 13th Oct 17, 2:42 PM
    • 436 Posts
    • 303 Thanks
    Comms69
    It now comes to light that our vendor, is in fact waiting for the sale of his partners property to go through, who we didn't even realise was in the chain??? Its utterly disgusting that this guy hasnt been forthcoming regards this info, which I had to squeeze out of the estate agents! So now we are not ready to exchange after all! Oh the irony!

    I've been advised by my Sol to threaten to pull out, unless he finds alternative accommodation/move in with his OH, so that we can complete! I'm willing to make such a threat as I'm sick of wasting more money on rent! Plus he's mortgage FREE!!!

    Originally posted by tallsmithy
    But you'd have to then pull out and carry on 'wasting' (not sure how a roof over your head is a waste of money, but hey ho) money on rent?
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 13th Oct 17, 2:44 PM
    • 5,002 Posts
    • 4,350 Thanks
    00ec25
    I've been advised by my Sol to threaten to pull out, unless he finds alternative accommodation/move in with his OH, so that we can complete! I'm willing to make such a threat as I'm sick of wasting more money on rent! Plus he's mortgage FREE!!!
    Originally posted by tallsmithy
    been there, done that. Vendor threatened, vendor removed property from the market and i was back at square one looking for a new property

    there is no easy solution to your situation, you can rant, you can wail, you can threaten, neither side is on a sure fire win as neither side knows what may be the reaction of the other. you have my sympathy.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 13th Oct 17, 2:49 PM
    • 1,135 Posts
    • 1,338 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    I've been advised by my Sol to threaten to pull out, unless he finds alternative accommodation/move in with his OH, so that we can complete! I'm willing to make such a threat as I'm sick of wasting more money on rent! Plus he's mortgage FREE!!!

    Originally posted by tallsmithy
    Making threats is unlikely to be the best way to resolve this, despite how frustrating it all gets.

    There's no point threatening to pull out unless you're actually prepared to go through with it, and then you've put yourself in a position where you're back to square one, no property to buy, and still paying rent.

    Selling/buying property seems to bring out the worst in some people, no idea why, it just does.
    • kelpie35
    • By kelpie35 13th Oct 17, 2:51 PM
    • 1,495 Posts
    • 4,695 Thanks
    kelpie35
    At least you still have a roof over your head OP

    Be thankful for small mercies.
    • martinbuckley
    • By martinbuckley 13th Oct 17, 2:54 PM
    • 702 Posts
    • 691 Thanks
    martinbuckley
    OP:

    Was the Estate Agent acting for you?

    Did you have a contract with the Estate Agent to provide you with a service in return for a fee?

    If the answer is "yes" to both then you may have a case.

    Hope this helps.
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