Shooting from the HIP

The laws governing Home Information Packs, or HIPs as they’re better known, are changing from April 6th this year.

They now stipulate that a detailed questionnaire will have to be filled in by the vendor and that the HIP will have to be available from day one of the house being put on the market.

Not a good time to be making house sales even trickier than they are at present with the market in the state it’s in and – what’s more –  also tinged with a certain irony.

The irony comes from the fact that HIPs were promised in a Labour 1997 manifesto pledge in order to ensure that less house sales fell through…

Surely instead of slowing down house sales with yet another layer of bureaucracy the government should suspend stamp duty or even suspend HIPs?

Most people would get a survey done on a prospective property and if not, whatever happened to the maxim of ‘caveat emptor’?

Ah, I’ve got it…

People would have to think for themselves and we don’t want that sort of thing going on, do we?


2 Responses

  1. I have never understood why the seller having a single survey and standing by it (or the surveyor standing by it, which is the same thing when you trace the money to home) is worse than every single prospective buyer having their own survey done at considerable expense and so dragging out the whole buying process considerably. Unless, of course, you’re a surveyor, in which case being paid only once and having to get it right is obviously a drawback.

  2. Well, the HIP is supposed to save some time with less work for the solicitor but I can’t say I noticed it when I sold my late father’s property last year.
    As you suggest, a single survey carried out by a fully qualified and accredited surveyor instead of a HIP (but possibly including some of the HIP’s features such as energy performance) seems perfectly adequate and would also be far more informative as regards the structural state of the property – something the HIP ignores.
    As far as I could see, some of the searches in the HIP were repeated by the solicitor, so it would seem that a survey and legal searches cover all the most important bases.

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