Q. I’m upsizing to a larger two bedroom property and selling my one bedroom apartment at the same time. We are now ready to exchange contracts except I am in a chain and everyone in the chain desires a different completion date, we have had several dates put forward via our respective solicitors over the past few days but no one can reach an agreement, obviously I am concerned as I would like to have the security of exchange but we are going nowhere fast, have you any solutions?
A. Sadly without an agreed completion date exchange is not possible, so it is imperative that the chain aligns and comes to some agreement. Unfortunately it can bring out the worst in people and it can often become a battle of egos with everyone wanting a date that suits them best. Egos however need to be thrown out of the window along with stubbornness if you want to get this exchange done. Ultimately you need to exchange to secure your property and if it means eating humble pie and letting go of your original desired date and becoming more flexible to align yourself with the chain then that is what you need to do. Buyers and sellers can be in different positions including some that maybe buying for the first time that are in rented accommodation and are maybe going to be homeless if they don’t get the date they need because their contract is expiring, of course this would be seen as a reasonable excuse for a buyer digging his heels in but ultimately even he would have to have a plan ‘B’ in place if that date really won’t work for the rest of the chain. Speak to your agent to discuss this further, they are in the privilege position of being able to speak to all the solicitors in the chain so it maybe that they can relay information a lots quicker than when it is done so via your solicitor through the normal legal channels. I always advise my clients to concentrate on exchange to secure the property where possible and work around completion dates, far better to actually secure the property than lose it altogether by risking a party pulling out at the eleventh hour because it’s taken so long to agree on a date.