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HTB- Property price change before exchange of contracts (reservation form expired)

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  • HTB- Property price change before exchange of contracts (reservation form expired)

    Hi all,

    I'm a first time buyer and part of the HTB scheme. Here's my dilemma, hopefully there's some rule I've missed or a legal loophole that's been overlooked that'll help me out of this jam.

    (This is the very brief version of events)
    I have been ready to exchange contracts for sometime now (Authority to Exchange from HTB) however the developer's solicitor has been ignoring my solicitors emails. I received a call last week from my estate agent informing me that the developer has decided that they are going to increase the price of my property by £15,000, if I don't accept then tough luck. I am still waiting to be notified of the price change via the legal channels.
    However this is not the worst part, due to the plot being an off plan reservation and there being over 6 months of delays (solely the developer, I can assure you) my reservation form has lapsed and it appears I have no leg to stand on legally, or so my solicitor tells me.

    To be frank I do not have the spare cash to be afford this price increase and out of principle I think it's completely outrageous that the developer thinks that it's acceptable to raise the price of my plot considering I'm first time buyer, on the HTB scheme and is ready to exchange contracts.

    Here's the reason for why the developer is increasing the price:
    The developer advertised the off plan plots from Q1 through to Q2 of 2017. The developer took the decision to take the plots off the market in Nov 2017.
    They planned on re-marketing them for Mar '18 with 2 showrooms and revised plot prices. Lots of interest was generated from the showroom days and the developer has come to the conclusion that he now wants more money for some of the more desirable plots that were reserved back in 2017.

    Does anyone know of any legal loophole to bypass this price change, or is there anything in the HTB rules that stipulates that the property value cannot change once the authority to proceed or the authority to exchange has been granted.

    I feel that there isn't a way out of this, but I'm not going down without a fight.

    Thank you in advance.

    Note: The estate agent informed me at the start of the year that the developer was delaying the exchange of contracts as they wanted to exchange in batches to save on admin fees (this was a telephone conversation). It has now become apparent that is was not the case.