Sell Quickly To Stop A Property Chain Collapse

The majority of property deals complete without issue, but a significant number of sale processes end up with a house sale falling through and breaking the property chain at some stage. Such cases are incredibly stressful, and you might think there’s nothing you can do. 

However, the good news is that there are live solutions out there. Of course, it’s always an option to relist your property with an estate agent. However, one of the best solutions to consider a quick sale for cash. This can allow you to continue with your planned deal to buy a new property. At, we make you an offer within just a day of hearing from you. Our offer could be the thing that stands between you and the new place you planned to buy.

What Is A Property Chain?

Let’s start by unpacking the concept of a property chain. Essentially, it is a connection between multiple different properties, and between multiple buyers and sellers. Often, there are just a few in a chain. For example, perhaps you’re selling to someone who needs to sell their own house before they can afford yours. However, in some cases there are half a dozen people in a chain, and this makes it rather volatile. Just one agreement has to fall through, and all the sales in the chain collapse.

What can cause a chain to break? Everything from relationship breakdowns to trouble getting a mortgage and late-stage survey findings can all dissolve an entire chain. And the results can be very expensive indeed, not to mention deeply disappointing.

If this has happened to you, we can help. As a cash property buyer, we’re not involved in any chain, and we’re ready to pay so you can complete your move as planned.

How Common Is A Property Chain Break?

A property chain break happens more often than you might think. Indeed, an estimated 25% of all sales will collapse at some point. Often between the offer being accepted and the sale being completed. This percentage captures sales that are victim to gazumping and gazundering, along with cases of failed mortgage applications. And any time a sale falls through, the chain it is part of is impacted at every link. In the most extreme cases, this can affect a dozen or more potential sales.

We gave a brief summary of some of the causes of chain breaks above. It is however, worth thinking about this in a bit more depth so that you know what to look out for.

What Could Make A House Sale Fall Through At The Last Minute?

A number of events can lead to a chain break where a house sale falls through at the last minute. This is in part because even what looks like a straightforward deal typically has a lot going on in the background. You’ll mostly focus just on the seller and the buyer. But it’s normal for there to also be two distinct mortgage lenders, solicitors and surveyors on both sides, and of course estate agents for both parties. And the longer the property chain, the more such parties there are, and the greater the likelihood that something will happen to delay a sale or break the chain.

When thinking about this possibility, the most important takeaway is how much money you stand to lose. Indeed, people often lose thousands through chain breaks. Though the loss tends to increase the further through the process you get. It’s possible you’ll even still have to pay fees to your mortgage lender, surveyor and solicitor, and yet still be back at the start.

Secured Finance

Most commonly, a property chain breaks because the funding behind a sale falls apart. If a potential buyer just can’t get the mortgage deal they need from a lender, then it’s unlikely they’ll be able to follow through on the arranged deal.

In addition, it’s standard procedure for a property buyer to get a conditional offer on a mortgage amount before a sale is officially agreed. However, this conditional offer is informal, and generally depends on a satisfactory valuation process as well as various other standard checks performed by lenders. In some cases, there will be disagreement about the real value of the property. In cases like this, the initial offer can simply expire and the buyer may learn that a renewal will come at a worst rate. Regardless of which scenario occurs, the deal won’t collapse and the chain will break.

Change In Personal Circumstances

While buyers and sellers try to anticipate how their personal lives and careers might impact on property deals, some things can’t be predicted and yet derail the purchase or sale process. For example, someone selling their home might have to deal with sudden job loss or a death in the family. Alternatively, an unforeseen relationship breakdown can mean that a family home is no longer appropriate for purchase. And even positive changes, such as new jobs overseas, can change whether someone will want to purchase a property. All of these things can break a property chain.

Gazumping, Gazundering And Gazanging

While these terms may be unfamiliar, the basic concepts are straightforward.

Gazumping is when the seller accepts a buyer’s offer but then goes on to accept a higher offer instead. While this is unfair, it isn’t illegal. All you can do to try and prevent gazumping is to work to complete the official sale process as quickly as possible.

The opposite of gazumping is gazundering, which is when a buyer makes an offer but then tries to drop the offered price at the very last moment of the deal. The seller then only has two real options – accept the new offer, or abandon the sale. Both are expensive and stressful.

Finally, gazanging occurs when the seller suddenly decides, late in the sale process, that they don’t want to let go of their property after all. Most frequently seen in times when the property market is doing poorly, gazanging also causes great upset and breaks the property chain.

Survey Report 

Surveys are carried out to check for issues in a property that’s on the market. A buyer might arrange for a variety of different surveys, but if their chosen one shows that there’s a serious problem with the property, that is grounds for the buyer to ask the seller to drop their price. In some cases, buyers will simply back out if the problem is significant enough. To guard against this outcome as a seller, you can arrange for your own preemptive survey prior to even putting a home on the market. In addition, if you do find issues, you can also estimate the cost of any repairs and factor them into the asking price.

What Do You Do When A House Sale Falls Through?

Naturally, if there are signs of a property deal falling through then you’ll likely fight as hard as you can to ensure it goes through as planned. However, some chain breaks are totally beyond control. When the worst happens, you then have to decide – will you go through the whole process again? Most people who were originally interested in your house have probably found their ideal home elsewhere, and you’ll need to go through everything from conveyancing arrangements to viewings and a fresh property listing. Plus, after one chain break has occurred, most people find themselves living in fear of the next one.

The good news is that you don’t have to repeat the whole process from scratch. If you’re sick of chain breaks and want a guarantee you won’t be susceptible to another one, can offer you a quick cash sale that will be completed in just a week or two. Our status as cash buyers means we don’t have to deal with chains. You can complete your sale to us on your own timeline. As a bonus, unlike an estate agent, we’ll will not charge you fees. We even provide free legal representation when we transact together.

Appoint An Estate Agent To Sell Your Property

If you enlist the services of an estate agent, they will conduct a valuation of your property’s worth based on the current market, and then they’ll put your home on the market. They will then arrange potential buyers for you. All through their own window as well as on a range of online property searching pages.

On the other hand, you’ll need to pay a fee to your estate agent. And if you’ve just suffered a chain break then it’s likely you’ve already paid such fees in the recent past. Taken together, they can be substantial, and can really put a dent in the amount you can afford to pay for your next property. Plus, even if you’re not worried about the fees, selling a property via an estate agent is a lengthy process. It can take months to get everything arranged and to find a suitable buyer. This can really be too long, if you’ve already spotted your dream home.

Sell Your Property Privately

Another option is to arrange for a private sale. In short, this amounts to you being your own estate agent. You figure out the appropriate asking price, figure out how to best advertise the home, set up visitations with potential buyers, conduct negotiations over any offers, and hire a solicitor to sort out the final paperwork for the deal. The obvious benefit to this route is that you don’t have to pay any estate agency fees at all. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t costs – in fact, you still need to pay advertising fees. In addition, the time from listing to sale can often be just as long as it would be with an estate agent, if not longer. So, as with the above option, your ideal home can pass you by.

Speak To A Cash Property Buyer To Buy Your House For Cash

Finally, you might enlist the services of a cash buyer. Property buying companies can act quickly. They already have money ready to buy properties rather than having to secure a mortgage. At, we make you an offer with no fees attached. We’ll make an offer to you quickly so that you’re less likely to lose out on your next home. We’re keen to buy just about any property. We can finish the sale in just a week after first hearing from you. If you’ve been through a chain break, you don’t have to worry the same thing happening with us. We are never part of a chain and can repair it very easily.

It’s Possible To Sell Quickly Even If Your House Sale Falls Through

Sadly, there’s nothing you can do to guarantee your property chain won’t break. And if it does, you’re likely to be left out of pocket and upset, worried about what you do next. It’s natural to dread repeating this process, not just because of the cost but because of the properties you might lose. At We can help you to arrange a quick cash sale that reflects your property’s value. Speak to us and see how we can help you to buy the dream home you want.