Top 5 Reasons Home Sales Fall Through and How to Prevent Them

Written by Posted On Thursday, 22 February 2024 07:55

Selling a home can be a complex process, and unfortunately, not all transactions reach a successful conclusion. Understanding the common reasons why home sales fall through is important for sellers seeking a seamless and successful sale. In this article, we'll explore the top five reasons that home sales fall through and provide insights on how sellers can take proactive steps to prevent these hurdles.

1. Financing Issues

Why it happens: One of the most common reasons for a home sale to fall through is financing-related issues. Buyers may encounter challenges securing a mortgage, such as changes in their credit score, financial instability, or issues with the property appraisal. Insurance can be another factor that impacts the sale.

Prevention Tips:

  • Encourage Pre-Approval: Prioritize offers from buyers who have been pre-approved for a mortgage, as this indicates they are more likely to secure financing.
  • Set Realistic Asking Price: Ensure that your home is reasonably priced to attract serious and financially qualified buyers.
  • Regularly Communicate with Buyers: Stay informed about the progress of the buyer's financing and address any potential issues promptly.
  • Get some insurance quotes on the front end: If flood insurance is a requirement, your flood policy can be transferred to the new buyer. That is almost always the better option but double checking doesn't hurt. Also have your insurance agent quote your property as if you were a new buyer so that way your agent can convey what a new policy will look like. Nothing is worse than going through the entire process and having a high insurance quote tank the deal at the very end.

2. Home Inspection Concerns

Why it happens: Home inspections often uncover issues or needed repairs that buyers weren't aware of during the initial stages of the sale. If significant problems arise, it can lead to negotiations breaking down.

Prevention Tips:

  • Pre-Listing Inspection: Conduct a pre-listing inspection to identify and address potential issues before listing your home.
  • Disclose Known Problems: Be transparent about any known issues to manage buyer expectations.
  • Address Repairs Promptly: If the inspection reveals necessary repairs, address them promptly to avoid delays in the closing process.

3. Appraisal Shortfall

Why it happens: An appraisal that comes in lower than the agreed-upon sale price can be a deal-breaker. Lenders are generally unwilling to lend more than the appraised value of the home. This requires the buyer to come up with more money out of pocket to cover the deficiency which generally kills the deal.

Prevention Tips:

  • Research Comparable Sales: Work with your real estate agent to gather information on recent comparable sales in your area to support your asking price.
  • Be Realistic About Value: While it's natural to want top dollar for your home, setting an unrealistic price can lead to appraisal challenges.

4. Title Issues

Why it happens: Title issues, such as unresolved liens, undisclosed heirs, or boundary disputes, can cause delays and even result in a canceled sale.

Prevention Tips:

  • Order a Preliminary Title Report: Before listing your home, order a preliminary title report to identify and address any potential issues early in the process. Your agent should be able to assist with this.
  • Address Liens and Disputes: Resolve any outstanding liens or boundary disputes before putting your home on the market.

5. Buyer Cold Feet

Why it happens: Sometimes, buyers get cold feet, especially in a competitive market or when facing unexpected life changes.

Prevention Tips:

  • Build Strong Buyer-Seller Relationships: Establish open communication with potential buyers to understand their concerns and address them proactively.
  • Provide a Home Warranty: Offering a home warranty can provide buyers with additional assurance and address concerns about potential future issues.


Navigating a successful home sale involves anticipating and addressing potential challenges. By understanding the top reasons why home sales fall through and taking proactive steps to prevent them, sellers can increase their chances of a smooth and successful transaction. From addressing financing issues to conducting pre-listing inspections, these preventive measures can help sellers create a positive and confident selling experience. Remember, collaboration with a knowledgeable real estate professional can also be instrumental in avoiding pitfalls and ensuring a successful home sale journey. By staying informed and proactive, sellers can position themselves for a successful sale in any market conditions.

If you have a house you are looking to sell anywhere in the New Orleans metro area, we can buy your house fast. If you have questions about selling your house, no matter the topic, give us a call at 504 264 1407 or visit our website at

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Carl Fanaro

We are a professional house buying company that has been in business for over 20 years. We buy houses fast with cash all over the greater New Orleans area

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