19% Of Home Moves Scuppered By Avoidable Delays

Almost a fifth (19%) of home moves in the past two years were disrupted by severe moving delays, affecting more than 115,000 transactions.

According to research conducted by You Gov on behalf of the HomeOwners Alliance and Shieldpay, the delays piled up following issues pertaining to the release of funds and sellers failing to vacate their sold properties on time.

20,500 home moves are forced to delay their move by more than a day because the funds were not released on their original move day. This means that, on average, up to 3% of all house moves are forced to delay their move after moving day necessities like removal vans had already been hired and paid for on the specific date.

This fragmented cohesion is not only causing mass inconvenience, it is also a catalyst for accruing avoidable costs at one of the most stressful and expensive times in a person’s life.

In total, over £15 million was lost to costs being paid out to overcome moving day delays and complications. Over a quarter (26%) of respondents found that delays incurred costs of at least £500. Additionally, 14% were faced with delay-based bills of over £1,000.

On a day when communication should be at its most clinical, 34% were forced to regularly request updates from their conveyancer and lender.

This lack of communication put pressure on the move and led to delays. Removal companies charging for waiting was a factor for 39% of respondents, 27% were forced to stump up for storage fees, 16% were charged a cancelation fee by their removals company and 9% incurred late completion charges.

These costs may have been paid despite the fact that a delay was not their fault. Over a third (36%) of moves involved a chain which contributed to delays.

Paula Higgins, Chief Executive of the HomeOwners Alliance, commented:

“Delays can occur at any time, but issues with transfers of funds are more likely to happen on a Friday when banks, conveyancers and removal firms are stretched to the limit as it’s the time when most housing deals tend to complete. On the last Friday of the month bank money transfers can get overloaded and it’s peak time for conveyancing fraud.”

How frustrating are circumstances like this for all stakeholders? What should be done to ensure fewer home moves are affected by persistent delays?

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1 Comment

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    There is stress as well as cost.

    My last move went to the wire thanks to a failure of solicitors to organize completion as I did 50 years ago.

    This caused my diabetes to go into meltdown and two days later I was on a hospital trolley being crashed through doors marked “resuscitation”

    I am considering a claim for personal injury

    We have to recognize the obvious. Conveyancing nowadays is a supply chain management operation. It needs to be handled by those qualified to deal with such operations. Not lawyers or quasi-lawyers

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