Home Information Packs
All Properties marketed for sale from 14 December 2007 in England and Wales will need a Home Information Pack.
You now need one of these whether you're selling through an agent or whether you're selling privately. You need to have commissioned your HIP by the time you market your property.
The Pack includes an Energy Performance Certificate, containing advice on how to cut carbon emissions and fuel bills. Also included are documents such as a sale statement, searches and evidence of title.
As at the time of writing, any property that was already on the market on the relevant commencement date (being 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 for all properties) does not need to have a HIP.
HIPs comprise mandatory documents and optional documents.
The mandatory documents are:
– an index (ie a list of the contents of the HIP);
– a sale statement (summarising the terms of sale;
– evidence of title;
– standard searches (local authority enquiries and a drainage and water search);
– an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC);
– commonhold information (where appropriate); and
– a copy of the lease (where appropriate).
Documents that are optional include:
– a Home Condition Report (HCR);
– additional leasehold information;
– guarantees and warranties; and
– other searches relevant to the particular area.
Some estate agents claim that they'll give you a free HIP if you sell their home with them. Well, it may be true ….. but you need to look at the small print extremely carefully. Very little is free in life and beware hidden 'ties'. For example, if you change your mind about selling through that agent, you will typically be required to pay them the full cost back. Often they won't let you use the HIP to sell with another agent, either, as it's "branded" for their agency. Hmmmm.
Open your eyes and check out the other options.
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