English / Welsh house purchase system sucks.
My niece recently put her house on the market and had lots of interest. Within a week she had an offer in excess of the asking price, on condition that she take it off the market. Everything seemed to be going well until, literally a couple of days before exchange was due to happen, the purchaser informed them they were only willing to pay £10k less than the asking price. The suspicion is that this was always their intention, assuming the vendor would panic and agree rather than have a chain collapse. Fortunately for my niece there is no chain and she was able to tell the purchaser where to go. She is however stuck with a bill for several hundred pounds from her solicitor through no fault of her own.
The Scottish system, where an accepted offer is basically a binding agreement, seems a much better system. I do realise that offers in Scotland can be conditional, but in this case the purchaser was just trying to ..... the vendor.
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