HIP legislation to change in April

Homeowners looking to sell their property will soon have to ensure it has a home information pack (Hip) in place before it goes to market, rather than just having ordered one.

The legislation comes into force from April 6th and will mean that every home on the market must come with a pack containing a property information questionnaire (PIQ) and energy performance certificate (EPC).

Property owners thinking about selling their home will be required to give information on the energy performance of any alterations to the house, such as conservatories or kitchen extensions.

This means people who have invested in quality work will see the advantages when taking their home to market.

A recent report showed that only 40 per cent of buyers saw the Hip for their purchased property before the keys were handed over, despite Hips having been a requirement since December 2007, according to Association for Home Information Pack Providers (AHIPP) director general Mike Ockenden.

He believes that the new legislation could speed up the buying process and give both buyers and sellers peace of mind.

"Hips provide buyers with a great deal of important information that should be taken into consideration before making an offer, from the homes energy efficiency to local search information," he said.

Todays modern conservatories tend to be less draughty and more energy-efficient than their antiquated predecessors – something that should show up on the EPC.

A recent statement from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors suggested that a stagnant housing market was pushing rental prices down.