Half of all property sales fell through in the last three months of 2018, according to research by property-buying firm Quick Move Now.
The finding, which covers transactions in England and Wales, represents a steep increase on the previous quarter of 2018, when a comparatively low 28% of transactions failed.
So, why do fall-throughs happen and what can you do to ensure your property sells? Below, we explore the latest market activity and give advice on selling your home in 2019.
According to research agency TwentyCi, the number of properties on the market climbed by 4% in 2017, but exchanges fell by 1.2%.
However, fall-throughs aren't an issue across all of the UK. The percentage of 2018 transactions that fell through after a sale had been agreed was much higher in England (22%) and Wales (23%) than in Scotland (10%) and Northern Ireland (10%).
According to Quick Move Now, the most common reason for failed property transactions is the buyer pulling out (30%).
Issues revealed by a were the third-highest factor at 16%, followed by difficulty (13%), the buyer or seller feeling that things weren't progressing (10%), other parts of the (9%), and gazundering (3%), where the buyer reduces their offer after the sale has been agreed.
As a seller, not all of these will be within your control, but there are steps you can take to lessen the chances of a fall-through.
If you're in the fortunate position of having multiple offers on the table, don't choose your buyer based purely on price.
It's also worth finding out whether they have a mortgage agreement in principle - a statement from a lender confirming that they're willing, in principle, to lend a certain amount - as this will indicate the likelihood of their mortgage application being accepted.
It's a good idea to choose a conveyancer or property solicitor before getting to the offer stage, but if you haven't, make sure you do so quickly.
Similarly, having all your paperwork ready can help speed things up and demonstrate to the buyer that you're organised and willing to move swiftly (our guide to contains a checklist of all the documents you're likely to need).
Keep in regular contact with the estate agent and let everyone know if you're going on holiday and will be unable to answer queries or sign documents.
Consider what they're asking and take advice from your solicitor if you're unsure. Many sellers have rejected such requests in the heat of the moment only to regret it when the sale collapses and they struggle to find another buyer.
With more homes up for sale and many buyers reluctant to commit to a purchase before Brexit, fall-throughs are only part of the problem - actually receiving an offer has been a challenge for many. With this in mind, we asked NAEA Propertymark, which represents estate agents across the UK, for advice for sellers.
MarkBentley, president of NAEA Propertymark and expert on the West Midlands market, says it's important that you manage your price expectations.
He said: 'Brexit is causing a great deal of uncertainty. Sellers don't know whether to put their property on the market now and buyers are unsure whether to make offers.
'With supply so low and demand fairly reasonable, prices will generally hold up, but sellers need to be sensible with their asking prices and not too ambitious.'
Meanwhile Katie Griffin, an NAEA representative based in the South West, told us:'Homes should be presented well, with excellent photography that is refreshed regularly.
'We are finding walk-though videos and 360-degree tours are promoting our sellers' homes, coupled with realistic pricing.