Could noisy neighbours be a property deal breaker?

A survey of over 1000 potential home buyers has revealed that rude sellers and bad neighbours are among the UK’s biggest hidden property deal-breakers.

The poll of UK adults by Populus for property guide SellingUp.com revealed that close to half (42%) would pull out of a possible purchase if the seller was rude and almost one in three (28%) would punish the offending vendor by reducing their offer.

The survey also discovered that hiring an unpleasant or annoying estate agent could be almost as costly for sellers, with around one third (35%) considering that enough of a reason to drop a deal entirely, or make a lower offer (19%). In addition, noisy neighbours were cited loudly as a problem that would make 70% opt to withdraw.

Respondents were given a list of potentially problematic property issues and asked to what extent they thought it would influence them making an offer.

10 key findings from the survey:

• 42% would slam the door purchase if the seller was rude
• Any sign of noisy neighbours would silence 70% of buyers
• A poor energy rating would cool down the deal for 75%
• A bad mobile phone signal would turn off 53%
• Evidence of pests would make 44% of buyers scurry off
• Aeroplane noise would send 41% of deals flying away
• Poor home security risks 77% of deals going astray
• The price could be cut down by 42% over a messy garden
• 25% might shy away from an embarrassing street name
• Being next door to a cemetery would kill off the deal for 31%

Oliver Lewis, SellingUp.com’s research manager, commented: “The aim of the survey was to remind sellers to think like a buyer when marketing their property and try to sort out as many flaws as they can. Also we wanted to help buyers make better informed decisions when purchasing, especially for investment, and think about the less high profile issues that could affect resale value.

When sellers are getting ready to put their property on the market, they are always being told to tidy up and make the place presentable, but there are many more factors they need to consider if they want to attract the widest number of buyers,” he continued.

Clearly with some ingrained issues like aeroplane noise and a bad mobile signal there is little or nothing the vendor can do. They simply have to hope that the buyer doesn’t notice or care.

On other points like evidence of mice, badly overgrown gardens or poor home security there is much greater scope to take action in advance. Hiring a pest control company, a gardening firm or a security specialist to resolve any problems might cost a few hundred pounds but could save them thousands when selling.”