There are two mistakes that are fatal for purchasers. First, falling so much in love with the property that you can’t see the faults and secondly, believing that you need to rush into the purchase because you might lose the property to another buyer.

An old bloke once told me that, if you miss out on a property, another will be around the corner. Interestingly enough, this has proven to be true. From the despair of losing a house, there is always found a better one to emerge. Buying property is something you should be quick about, but at the same time never rush. Today’s story is about a person who allowed themselves to rush.

The property was advertised with a separate accommodation. Upon inspection, an elder person of the family lived in the separate accommodation. It looked to the outside world that the property was a dual occupancy.

The agent then went to work and seduced the lover into rushing into the purchase. Against their solicitor’s warning, the buyer allowed themselves to sign the Contract on a Friday night without proper review. The Vendor’s solicitor slipped in a new special condition that was missed by the purchaser’s solicitor. Now, the purchaser is stuck with a property that doesn’t have the proper approvals. 

Following the exchange, the purchaser found out that the separate accommodation was only approved as a ‘workshop’. At any time, council can issue a notice and a fine for using the property not in accordance with its approved use. The new owner now has two choices, either not rent out the second accommodation or seek the appropriate approval from council. This could have simply been avoided by a little more caution and keeping your eyes open. 

Our investigations have proven that the agent, the vendor’s solicitor and the vendor met to plan and strategise how not to tell the purchaser. We have that in writing.

No doubt, the agent has breached Section 52 of the Property and Stock Agents Act 2002, in that, they concealed a material fact. What is more foolish is that, if the purchaser had discovered the non-compliance between exchange and settlement, Clause 17 of the Conveyancing [Sale of Land] Regulation 2016 would have permitted the rescission of the contract without penalty. The agent risked the contract and prosecution and has left the purchaser with a problem that can only be resolved with expensive legal action.

Give your solicitor time to review and you may save a lot of money.