Final legal stages continue to delay property purchases

Final legal stages continue to delay property purchases

Data from property purchasing specialist, HBB Solutions, has revealed how the pandemic property market boom and the resulting market backlog is impacting the property transaction timeline, even for those utilising a quick sale method, with the average time to complete increasing by over three weeks so far in 2022 when compared to pre-pandemic market conditions. 

HBB Solutions specialises in preventing property transaction fall throughs by stepping in to purchase properties on tight deadlines when, for example, a chain breaks.

The latest data on general market performance shows that the average property is taking 248 days to sell when opting for the traditional market route. On average, HBB Solutions have seen their time to sell sit at 85.4 days in 2022, considerably faster than the traditional route.

 But despite their established expertise in the quick sale field, the current market backlog means that even HBB Solutions have fallen foul of timeline delays, with an increase in the time it’s taking between instructing a solicitor and completing on a sale. Their data shows that so far in 2022, transactions are taking three weeks longer to complete versus the pre-pandemic market of 2019 – a 47% increase. 

The biggest increase in England and Wales has been the East Midlands where the current time for a quick sale is averaging 103 days, up by 159% (63 days) when compared to the pre-pandemic market. In London, the average property is taking 77 days from the point a solicitor is instructed to the point of completion, the second largest pandemic market delay, up 120% (42 days) since 2019. 

 In the West Midlands, it’s taking 50 days longer, equating to a 113% increase when compared to the pre-pandemic market. But not every area of the market is suffering to the same extent and, in fact, HBB Solutions have seen their time to complete drop in both Wales (-13 days) and the East of England (-4 days) during the pandemic. 

Managing Director of HBB Solutions, Chris Hodgkinson, commented:

 “The pandemic property market boom has seen a substantial and sustained level of buyer activity sweep the market over the last two years and, as a result, homes sellers have been securing a buyer at great speed. 

 However, such heightened demand has led to significant delays during the final legal stages, which it’s fair to say, weren’t the most streamlined to begin with. This had led to a backlog of transactions left in limbo between accepting an offer and completing and this has been the contributing factor behind a prolonged home selling timeline. 

 Even professional quick sale specialists such as ourselves are being affected and it is taking around three weeks longer on average. Despite this increase in sale time, we are still able to utilise our expertise and purchase properties in almost any time scale, with the fastest being four days, while the majority are completing in a month based on the client’s preferred completion date.”

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