Were HIPs Ever Replaced?
Chapter 5 from our home buying and selling guide
"Don't even think about buying or selling your home until you've read this book -it will save you time & could save you thousands" asks the pun-ridden question "Were HIPs ever replaced?" Home Information Packs, that is.
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So, Were HIPs Ever Replaced?
Ten years in the making before their introduction in August
2007, the Sellers’ Pack then the Home Information Pack
(HIP) was suspended in May 2010 and finally bit the dust on 20th January 2012.
As Mr Pickles, the Communities Secretary announced on May 20th 2010:
“HIPs are history. This action will encourage sellers back into the market, and help the market as a whole and the economy recover.”
Sorry, Mr. Pickles, but I don’t think you can blame HIPs for holding back the Housing Market (clue: try Banks), but, I digress.
Up until then it was a legal requirement that before you put
your property on the market for sale, you were required to
have a HIP available.
HIPs were composed of basic legal information such as, either Land Registry documents proving title or what is known as an
Abstract or Epitome of Title where the property was older and had not been registered at the Land Registry, a plan of the property and searches such as Local Authority Searches, and a Drainage Search.
There was also an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) designed to test and rate the energy efficiency of a property.
And it is the EPC which is the sole survivor of the HIP cull.
An EPC is still a requirement before you are able to put your property on the market. The important difference is that it needn’t hold up the marketing. The EPC must be available within 28 days.
An EPC costs on average about £40- £50
What does an EPC contain?
An Energy Performance Certificate is prepared by a Domestic Energy Assessor who carries out an inspection of your Property. The purpose of this inspection is to calculate how energy efficient and environmentally friendly your property is.
The certificate is drawn up, detailing the costs of running your property, how much Carbon Dioxide it produces per year, a summary of how certain features of your property affect its rating and measures that can be adopted to save money and improve the property’s energy efficiency.
All in easy to understand fridge type ratings from A-G. (See figure above.)
From 20th May 2010, where the sale is private, there is a new duty on the person acting on behalf of the seller, normally the Estate Agent or the Seller’s Solicitors, that they are satisfied that an EPC has been commissioned before marketing is begun.
All of the new duties carry fixed penalties where somebody fails in the duty conferred on them by the new regulations.
If in doubt your Estate Agent or your Conveyancing Solicitor will advise you.