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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Home Information Packs
Article Type: Newsbriefs From: Structural Survey, Volume 26, Issue 2.
Keywords: Selling, Legislation
All homes marketed for sale from 14 December 2007 in England and Wales have needed a Home Information Pack (HIP). A key component of the HIP is the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), which rates the home’s energy efficiency, using graphs like those on fridges and washing machines. It includes recommendations on how to cut fuel bills and reduce carbon emissions, encouraging people to make improvements to the energy efficiency of their homes. Currently, any property that was already on the market on the relevant commencement date (i.e. 1 August 2007 for sales of homes with four or more bedrooms; 10 September 2007 for those with three or more bedrooms and 14 December 2007 for all properties) does not need to have a Home Information Pack. At the time of writing no date has been set when all properties that are on the market will be required to have a Pack. In addition, the Government has also conducted monitoring and analysis of the implementation programme to ensure continued smooth roll out. Early monitoring shows:
HIPs are taking on average seven to ten days to prepare;
the majority of property, and drainage and water searches, are being delivered within five days;
Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are being prepared on average within two to four days;
on average, a HIP costs between £300 and £350. Most of these are not new costs, as they cover the cost of searches and other documents, which have simply been transferred from buyer to seller at the beginning of the process. The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is of course new but provides consumers with valuable information of the costs of running their home; and
competition from HIPs is reducing the costs of average property searches. 85 local authorities have already reduced their charges by £30 on average.