HIPs Extended To All Properties

Controversial packs will be mandatory from 14th December

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Home Information Packs (HIPs) will be extended to all one and two bedroom properties from mid December.

The decision, announced by Housing Minister Yvette Cooper, means that all properties will now require a HIP if they are put on the market on or after 14th December 2007.

The news has been welcomed by the Association of Home Information Pack Providers (AHIPP), which has been calling on Government to extend the rollout of packs across the market.

Paul Broadhead, Deputy Director General, AHIPP said, "The independent research by Europe Economics dispels suggestions by RICS and NAEA that HIPs are having a detrimental impact on the market place. Continued mis-information has contributed to the delay and has resulted in fewer energy efficiency measures being introduced by homeowners."

He continued “HIPs are here to stay. By working together with the wider industry we can now build upon this foundation and really revolutionise the market for the benefit of the consumer and the industry. In addition, we can also start to significantly improve the energy efficiency of our homes.”

However, the report published by Yvette Cooper on behalf of the Government admits that HIPs have hit the housing market delaying vendors from putting their properties up for sale and has done little to accelerate transactions as had been the intention.

Tim Dalby-Quenet of Bushells Chiswick office said "Owners of one or two bedroom properties, thinking about going on the market, should consider doing so before the 14th December to avoid the need for a HIP.

"There seems to be a very mixed response from agents as to the benefits of HIPS as well as the actual effectiveness, which is yet to be accurately measured. Our HIP provider tells us that only about five per cent of purchasers have requested to see the packs."

He continued "It is still very early days and we are sure that the perceived benefits to the buyer will filter through in time. However, we have noticed that since HIPS came in for three and four bedroom properties, many potential sellers have held back from going on the market because of the cost and time sensitive nature of certain elements of the pack."

November 23, 2007