A quarter of estate agents have seen 10 per cent or more transactions fall through over the last year, with 46 per cent reporting that buyers were most at blame.
Property buying firm HBB Solutions surveyed 942 UK estate agents about their experiences of fall throughs over the past year.
Of those surveyed, a quarter said they had been subject to a greater degree of property sale fall throughs with up to 29 per cent of all transactions collapsing in the last year.
Around 44 per cent of respondents said they had seen less than five per cent of sales collapse, with a further 26 per cent seeing this issue impact between just five to nine per cent of transactions. Only around one per cent of agents said they had seen more than half of their sales fall through.
When it came to the reason why, 46 per cent stated it was due to issues on the buyers side, with 22 per cent also citing buyers further up or down the chain as the issue. Solicitors or conveyancers were deemed at fault for 17 per cent of fall throughs.
The biggest issue for estate agents was that it had wasted their time in progressing the sale once a buyer was found, reported by 41 per cent, with wasted financial resources also a major issue for 34 per cent of respondents.
This is bad for business as 34 per cent of agents also found that their seller chose to re-list with another agent after a sale collapsed, even when the agent themselves was not to blame.
Chris Hodgkinson, managing director of HBB Solutions, said: “The good news is that with insufficient stock levels to meet such heightened buyer demand in recent years, fall throughs haven’t perhaps been as prevalent and when they do occur, sellers tend to find another buyer pretty quickly.”
He added that as it is so often deemed the buyer’s fault, the research “highlights the importance of opting for a buyer in a strong position, rather than the one placing the biggest offer on the table.”