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  • FIRST POST
    • Karenlouisee
    • By Karenlouisee 12th Mar 18, 9:28 PM
    • 3Posts
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    Karenlouisee
    New build reserved, now selling to others
    • #1
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:28 PM
    New build reserved, now selling to others 12th Mar 18 at 9:28 PM
    Any insight or advice appreciated.

    We reserved a new build property, paid £500 fee, was told reserved for 12 weeks, but not to worry as “we are flexible even if you don’t sell it in the 12 weeks”. Only 4 weeks on we have had an offer on our house, put in our mortgage application, paid for valuation, developer called us today saying “sorry, someone has been to the MD and made an offer that’s been accepted, so you can no longer have the house”
    Have reservation paperwork, only states date of reservation, no time length time of reservation etc. No t&c or disclaimers etc.
    So, we will lose sale of our home, lose £250 valuation fee, £200 mortgage advisor fees, and more importantly our dream home.

    Do we have a leg to stand on here?
Page 1
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 12th Mar 18, 9:38 PM
    • 6,513 Posts
    • 6,069 Thanks
    00ec25
    • #2
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:38 PM
    • #2
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:38 PM
    what does it say on the reservation paperwork?

    No builder is going to take money without having explicit terms and conditions about what that money covers

    being told something is irrelevant, what is written down is what matters
    • LittleMax
    • By LittleMax 12th Mar 18, 9:44 PM
    • 1,285 Posts
    • 1,931 Thanks
    LittleMax
    • #3
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:44 PM
    • #3
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:44 PM
    It must have something printed on it - what makes it reservation paperwork if it has nothing printed on it? You make it sound like it's the date written on a piece of plain A4 paper!
    • Karenlouisee
    • By Karenlouisee 12th Mar 18, 9:54 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Karenlouisee
    • #4
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:54 PM
    • #4
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:54 PM
    It details the plot name address, reservation fee £500. Reservation expiry date: exchange date.
    Purchase price valid until: completion date.
    • Karenlouisee
    • By Karenlouisee 12th Mar 18, 9:57 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    Karenlouisee
    • #5
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:57 PM
    • #5
    • 12th Mar 18, 9:57 PM
    No small print t&c if you see what I mean. Only details they will keep 50% of the deposit if we cancel the purchase.
    • Dolly123
    • By Dolly123 12th Mar 18, 10:06 PM
    • 147 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    Dolly123
    • #6
    • 12th Mar 18, 10:06 PM
    • #6
    • 12th Mar 18, 10:06 PM
    Was it a Mastermove/Smoothmove kind of reservation?
    • karenlouisee
    • By karenlouisee 12th Mar 18, 10:37 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    karenlouisee
    • #7
    • 12th Mar 18, 10:37 PM
    • #7
    • 12th Mar 18, 10:37 PM
    No I don’t believe it was a master/smooth move

    They are usually quite flexible with people on reservations, they are a fairly small local company not national, for example the house was previously reserved for 6 months before the buyers pulled out. Which is why it’s even more annoying to have only had it reserved for 4 weeks before they are attempting to sell it on to someone else, when both ourselves and our buyers Already have mortgage applications in progress, in fact 2 weeks ago the developer provided necessary paperwork to our mortgage advisor that he needed to show it had been reserved.

    Certainly bad practice, but whether I can enforce the contract I don’t know.
    • cjdavies
    • By cjdavies 12th Mar 18, 11:21 PM
    • 3,355 Posts
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    cjdavies
    • #8
    • 12th Mar 18, 11:21 PM
    • #8
    • 12th Mar 18, 11:21 PM
    Do you get the £500 reserve fee back as you did not drop out they did?

    Assuming like any other house purchase, anyone can drop out before exchange without penatly.
    Last edited by cjdavies; 13-03-2018 at 2:13 PM.
    • LittleMax
    • By LittleMax 13th Mar 18, 2:07 AM
    • 1,285 Posts
    • 1,931 Thanks
    LittleMax
    • #9
    • 13th Mar 18, 2:07 AM
    • #9
    • 13th Mar 18, 2:07 AM
    Nothing like NHBC form then?
    • karenlouisee
    • By karenlouisee 13th Mar 18, 6:24 AM
    • 3 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    karenlouisee
    I presume we would get it all back yes.

    Not like the NBHC it seems, that looks like would have made things more straightforward.
    • Silvertabby
    • By Silvertabby 13th Mar 18, 8:12 AM
    • 2,858 Posts
    • 4,087 Thanks
    Silvertabby
    We bought nearly 25 years ago, also from a smaller builder.

    Initially, we were told that the house we wanted was already reserved, but they took our contact details in case anything changed.

    We then had a phone call from them to say that the original buyer had mis-lead them in that he hadn't even had an offer on his own house - and as he almost certainly wouldn't be able to complete by the due date, his reservation had been cancelled.

    We then down put our £100 reservation fee - on condition that we HAD to complete by a certain date.

    We were ok as we were living in Armed Forces married quarters at the time - but it must have been stressful for anyone who had had to sell.

    I did wonder if the builders did that because they knew that we didn't have anything to sell - but sounds like it's still normal practice with smaller builders. Cash flow, perhaps?
    Last edited by Silvertabby; 13-03-2018 at 8:15 AM.
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 13th Mar 18, 8:39 AM
    • 9,605 Posts
    • 10,683 Thanks
    AnotherJoe
    Any insight or advice appreciated.

    We reserved a new build property, paid £500 fee, was told reserved for 12 weeks, but not to worry as “we are flexible even if you don’t sell it in the 12 weeks”. Only 4 weeks on we have had an offer on our house, put in our mortgage application, paid for valuation, developer called us today saying “sorry, someone has been to the MD and made an offer that’s been accepted, so you can no longer have the house”
    Have reservation paperwork, only states date of reservation, no time length time of reservation etc. No t&c or disclaimers etc.
    So, we will lose sale of our home, lose £250 valuation fee, £200 mortgage advisor fees, and more importantly our dream home.

    Do we have a leg to stand on here?
    Originally posted by Karenlouisee
    Seems to me you have a clear case to get your expenses like those back.
    Write a very short note to them saying that as they have reneged on your contract*, you want back not just your deposit (goes without saying but you shoudl say it) but also those expenses as well and if not forthcoming within 14 days you will begin small claims action.
    And if they dont, then make that small claims action via MCOL.

    * just because its not written down doesn't mean it isnt valid, they accepted your money and made a verbal contract which is backed up by the receipt.
    • mjs0510
    • By mjs0510 13th Mar 18, 8:42 AM
    • 17 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    mjs0510
    It sounds like the house would almost be ready to move into so they will want it sold asap.

    I'd find it strange that a builder would take a firm reservation from somebody that hadn't already sold. 12 weeks is a long time to give you to sell + another 12 weeks or so that it would most likely take for completion. Lots of buyers, even private would think twice if somebody in a proceedable position came along and made an offer against an unproceedable buyer.

    Did you go back and let them know you had an offer?

    I'm not sure theres a lot you can do re your fees as until exchange there is no legal obligation on either side.
    • hammy1988
    • By hammy1988 13th Mar 18, 9:19 AM
    • 135 Posts
    • 88 Thanks
    hammy1988
    Coming from someone who reserved a new build house when selling our own, it IS stressful as the developers do pile the pressure on. The sales rep from our development wouldn't leave my solicitor who was dealing with our house sale alone. We were told in no uncertain terms that we had to complete by a certain date, otherwise, they could pull out, and this was threatened often (I still have the grey hairs from it all).

    Personally, I'm not sure why you were advised to even reserve a property when you hadn't even had an offer on your own house? The new build developers wouldn't touch us until we had had an offer on ours. Very strange.
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 13th Mar 18, 9:23 AM
    • 9,605 Posts
    • 10,683 Thanks
    AnotherJoe

    I'm not sure theres a lot you can do re your fees as until exchange there is no legal obligation on either side.
    Originally posted by mjs0510
    Thats true in general but if you agreed a contract with someone (and to boot, sealed it by paying money) seems to me (IANAL) its a very different matter.
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 13th Mar 18, 9:29 AM
    • 7,837 Posts
    • 8,015 Thanks
    davidmcn
    Thats true in general but if you agreed a contract with someone (and to boot, sealed it by paying money) seems to me (IANAL) its a very different matter.
    Originally posted by AnotherJoe
    If it's as sketchy as the OP says, I'm not sure what the terms of the "contract" actually are.
    • mjs0510
    • By mjs0510 13th Mar 18, 10:27 AM
    • 17 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    mjs0510
    Thats true in general but if you agreed a contract with someone (and to boot, sealed it by paying money) seems to me (IANAL) its a very different matter.
    Originally posted by AnotherJoe
    I would be surprised if the reservation contract is as open as that - of course there is always a possibility that the builder has left themselves wide open.
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