HIP? | Seller & Buyer | Estate & Managing Agents | Legal |Career| Join Us |Contact Us

HIP? - HIP Dry Run

Findings from the Dry Run and Area Trials to date are as follows:

• HIPs are being produced in around 10 days. However, the time taken varies depending on the area between 4 days and 4 weeks. The main cause of delay is in obtaining the Local Search.

• HIPs for Leasehold properties take on average 7 days longer to produce.

In September 2006, the Department pledged £4 million of funding to support six Area Trials for the packs in Bath, Newcastle, Southampton, Northampton, Huddersfield and Cambridge, beginning in November 2006. The trials are being rolled out by the Department in partnership with industry and aim to help test both the Packs and full Home Condition Reports.

Since November 2005 HIPs have also been ‘dry run’ by ‘early adopters’ keen to test the benefits they offer. More than 18000 packs have been produced, varying from packs consisting simply of key legal documents to packs that included searches and surveys. More than 100 organisations are participating in the Dry Run.

In November 2006 we began the 6 Area Trials in co-operation with the Association of Home Information Pack Providers (AHIPP). These are intended to:

• test the practicalities of producing full packs using certificated home inspectors;

• enable us to understand how we can maximise the benefits of HIPs for consumers and, in particular, how we can encourage the take up of Home Condition Reports and the benefits they could bring

• test consumer reactions to Energy Performance Certificates and enable us to understand how we might maximise the carbon reductions they could bring.

The £4m that has been set aside to support the Area Trials is being used to publicise the availability of packs in the trial areas; to explain the benefits; to subsidise the production of packs; and to fund independent research by Ipsos Mori to monitor the trials.

More than 150 organisations are participating in the Area Trials and so far almost 1000 packs have been commissioned, 60p per cent of these with Home Condition Reports.

The majority of buyers have said that they would be likely to make changes suggested in the EPC, but there is a need to improve the clarity of information contained in the HIP for buyers and sellers.

The Home Use and Home Contents forms require further amendments to avoid creating an added burden for industry and consumers.