Beware of the Part Exchange pitfall

Persimmon Homes
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Zariaj111's review of Persimmon Homes

“Beware of the Part Exchange pitfall”


written by Zariaj111 on 10/07/2020

If you are Part Exchanging with Persimmons Homes one piece of advice I would give you is to demand that Persimmons carry out the Homebuyers Survey simultaneously with the Estate agents valuations before you pay any Reservation fee or sign the part exchange contact. If you read our experience as below all will come clear:

My wife and I signed up to a home buyers part exchange scheme with Persimmon Homes in September 2019. The agreement was for us to exchange our house for an agreed sum and buy a house from Persimmons for an agreed sum.

We had valuations carried out by local estate agents as the first steps and were given a Buyer’s Exchange of Contracts Checklist to work through. We began by applying for a mortgage with their recommended mortgage brokers, instructed their recommend conveyancing solicitors and paid a £300 commitment fee, arranged and paid for gas and electricity reports.

All was going well until we had The Home Buyers Survey carried out in November. After the surveyor carried out the survey, he informed me that there were some minor issues but wouldn’t go into specifics. I phoned Persimmon several times after the survey and emailed the sales office to get the results from it. 2 weeks past and we assumed that the Survey had passed then in mid November I received a phone call from Persimmons to say that issues had been found and they wanted 2 further surveys; Wood and Timber and Structural Survey. Both surveys found embellished issues with the house and subsequently Persimmon homes would not honour the part exchange.

Section 2 of the part exchange contact we signed stipulated that if defects were found on the house we were selling we would be given the option to rectify these at our own costs, which we agreed to do but Persimmons were not interested when we approached them about this.

We were eventually refunded £250 from the £500 reservation fee in February 2020 after many phone calls, however we believe that we should have been refunded the remaining £250 as we had the reservation cancelled on us by Persimmons opposed to us changing our minds and cancelling on our own free will. We also paid for the optional extra of an outside tap on the new build that cost us £95 and the £600 we paid to Ison Harrison Solicitors for the conveyancing. All in all Persimmons have left us £945 out of pocket.

We requested a full refund for all our costs incurred as the reasons for Persimmons cancelling were beyond our control but Persimmons refused saying they had the right to pull out and are not under any obligation to refund us. Basically, Persimmons has acted like an unscrupulous private seller in doing this.

We were out of pocket for simply following the instructions given to us Buyer’s Exchange of Contracts Checklist and we did everything in the order the form that was given to us when we signed the contract.

The whole process of the part exchange caused us a great deal of stress and anxiety. It wasn’t as it was sold to us in the showroom as an easy stress-free process I the showroom. In fact it was nightmare from start to finish and we were given lots of misleading information.

In our opinion If the house, we were selling was going to be potentially such an issue for Persimmons they should have had the survey carried out at the same time as the estate agents valuation to save us from this hassle and wasting our money and not so far into the process as per my opening paragraph.

Anyone part exchanging needs to consider potential issues you may have along the way as from our experience you will be offered no support. They even wanted us to pay for the 2 additional surveys out of our own pocket but we refused. If Persimmons can find an excuse to pull out they will do. For example if not the survey it could be the electrical report etc. The part exchange contract is not worth the paper it is written on as the final section states that Persimmons have the right cancel or withdraw from the scheme at anytime.

There is no law that can compel Persimmons to refund you your money if they decide to pull out as home buying and selling are not covered by general consumer law and Persimmons take full advantage of the lack of protection. If for example you book a holiday and the holiday firm cancels then you quite rightly expect a full refund and the travel firm is breaching consumer law if it refuses. Home buyers from large multinational house builders should be offered this same protection.

If after reading this you still decide you want to part exchange with them ask the person in the showroom what will happen if things go wrong and use my experience as a hypothetical example. Ask them if you will get your fees back, ask them if they will carry out the Homebuyers survey as the first step rather than towards the end and if not why not? 

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