Scottish Sale System Frustrates Buyers

Thursday, August 12 2004

One in four Scots would now like to see the Scottish ?offers over? house price system changed to one closer to the ?fixed price? system used in England, hoping that such a move would avoid them wasting time and money pursuing houses they can?t really afford, a new report has from Clydesdale Bank shown.

Rising interest rates, the cost of multiple surveys, and the competition for school places are just a few of the reasons for Scottish buyers? increasing frustration.

However, such a move could open up buyers to a whole host of problems from which they are currently protected under the Scottish system, such as ?gazumping?, where sellers pull out of deals with buyers after accepting an offer because they?ve been offered more for their property.

The current Scottish system, where buyers are invited to make offers above a quoted figure, can play to the advantage of the seller as they may make more money. However, the English model may appear more attractive to buyers as they don?t risk having to pay for multiple surveys.

Steve Reid, Clydesdale Bank?s head of personal financial services, said: ?The English system may have ?fixed prices? but our research shows bidding wars still occur with many buyers offering above the asking price straight away. However, unlike in Scotland, such bidding wars do not come at an expense to all the bidders as they do not need to conducts surveys to make an offer.?