HIPs hinder residential sales, says Hamptons International

Home Information Packs are discouraging homeowners from putting their properties up for sale, says Hamptons International.

The estate agency claims that HIPs are not enhancing the UK sales market or meeting the original objectives of speeding the buying process and stopping gazumping.

It points to market figures that span from the introduction of HIPs in August 2007 and to full rollout December 2007 and says they present a very different picture.

Figures comparing the market before and after the implementation of HIPs reveal that the stock levels of new instructions in London were down by 24% and in the country region by 6%, resulting in a 15% decrease in overall stock levels across the UK.

A recent poll by Hamptons International also found that despite government confidence that energy performance certificates will reduce fuel bills and benefit consumers, energy efficiency is not a key consideration for most buyers when it comes to finding the right property.

In fact, a breakdown of Hamptons International properties across the UK reveals over a third have an EPC rating of E with 26% of properties scoring a D rating, and only 11% achieving a C rating or more.

Hamptons is fearful that the proposed legislation for June 1 will hinder the process further, especially given present market conditions.

Marc Goldberg, head of residential sales at Hamptons International says:”We are certainly concerned about the proposed implementation on June 1 of requiring a HIP to be in place prior to marketing a property – especially given the current time delays that are involved.

“If the proposed implementation for June 1 takes place then this will very seriously slow down the entire process and increase cost.

“We would seriously urge the government to review its recommendations in order to help, rather than hinder the current residential market further.”