House price warning to aspiring home buyers over infuriating tactic from rivals | Personal Finance | Finance

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Four in five homebuyers support a ban on gazumping, according to a new study.

The tactic – which sees a rival buyer emerge at the last minute to hijack a purchase with a higher offer – has already been outlawed in Scotland.

New research suggests the vast majority of people would like to see this extended to the rest of the UK. Calls to see it outlawed come as house prices are fast-approcahing an all-time high.

Research by specialist lender Market Financial Solutions (MFS) found four in 10 – 38 percent – have been gazumped in the past decade.

It said: “Four fifths (78 percent) of respondents are in favour of the government introducing laws to ban the practice of gazumping in England and Wales.”

However, the study found that many people are not particularly virtuous themselves when it comes to using the tactic.

For almost one in three (29 percent) admitted to gazumping a rival buyer by coming in with a higher bid on a property.

And almost half (46 percent) would consider doing so in the future if it meant getting the property they wanted.

In addition, the survey revealed that one in four – 26 percent – of home have gazundered a seller by lowering their offer late in the process.

The MFS research found that three quarters (73 percent) believe gazumping and gazundering have become more common due to high demand and limited supply.

A further 67 percent say that the property market is too competitive.

Chief executive of MFS, Paresh Raja, aid: “For all the challenges that both buyers and sellers have faced in recent years, there’s no escaping the fact that the property market remains incredibly competitive.

“Our research underlines one of the by-products of this, with buyers often having to resort to questionable tactics like gazumping to secure the property they want.

“As the government’s Levelling Up Committee launches an inquiry into improving homebuying and selling in England, it’s important they take heed of this data.

“Not only is gazumping becoming more prevalent, but there is huge demand for laws to be changed to tackle the issue.

“Clearly, the underlying, persistent imbalance between supply and demand is a key factor in this problem.

“It’s more important than ever, therefore, that lenders and brokers work together to provide the tailored financial solutions that homebuyers need to navigate the challenges of today’s market, with speed remaining a vital quality among lenders – this closes the window of opportunity for a buyer to be gazumped.”

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