View more on these topics

Labour wants seller&#39s packs by 2005

The inclusion of the Homes Bill in the Queen&#39s Speech means seller&#39s packs are set to become a legal part of the home moving process from 2005.

Seller&#39s packs were first touted in 1997 but critics of the concept fear extra costs of £500 plus could slow down the mortgage market by making home owners more reluctant to move. But supporters claim seller&#39s packs will shorten the time from offer to exchange of contracts.

Mortgage pundits say the industry should put misgivings aside and prepare for the seller&#39s pack introduction. Stephen Smith, Legal & General&#39s director of housing marketing, says: “Now that the necessary legislation has been flagged by the government, the industry will have to start work to plan for their introduction in 2005 or 2006.”

But he adds: “Seller&#39s packs are not a panacea. They will not address the problems caused by chains and they will not eliminate gazumping.”

Tim Stone, senior mortgage consultant at Bristol-based Andrews Mortgage Services, says: “I&#39m all in favour. Seller&#39s packs will cut out the timewasters who don&#39t really want to move and will uncover structural problems early in the process.”

And Rod Murdison, proprietor of London-based Murdison & Browning, says: “Anything that speeds up property purchase is a good thing. But I&#39m not sure who will realistically sit down and go through it – I doubt the average purchaser will read anything over two pages. I just wonder if solicitors&#39 fees will go up.”

Bob Riach, proprietor of Scunthorpe-based Riach IFAs, says: “£500 is quite cheap for properties in the South, but a lot for those in the North. There is a danger packs could depress the market in some areas. I think they should be optional.”

Recommended

Smaller manufacturers see orders and output fall at fastest rate for a year

Small and medium-size manufacturers have seen orders and output fall at the fastest rate fora year, according to a CBI survey published today. The figures for the last four months show that smaller manufacturers are finding it particularly tough to break free from the manufacturing recession. 22% of firms said total new orders were up […]

House price rises will drag more homeowners into the tax net

Research from the Halifax, based on official figures, shows that tax revenue raised from both stamp duty on residential property and inheritance tax attributable to housing wealth is estimated to have risen almost five-fold from £735 million in 1992/93 to £3,638 million in 2001/02. This dramatic increase has been driven by the failure of successive […]

CBI welcomes Queen&#39s speech

The CBI said yesterday that business would give “six out of ten” to the legislative programme set out in the Queen&#39s speech. John Cridland, Deputy Director-General, said: “The government is making huge strides with planning reform and communications regulation, but there will be real concern about regional assemblies, business rates and charges for development.” On […]

Face up to the seller&#39s pack challenge

The great “will they or won&#39t they” debate finally came to a conclusion last week as the government confirmed that legislation to bring in seller&#39s packs will be brought forward in the new session of Parliament. The sections of the Homes Bill that related to seller&#39s packs, which were put on hold when last year&#39s […]

Pensions - thumbnail

Changes to capped drawdown tables

The tables used for capped drawdown maximum income calculations have been updated. We look at the reasons for the change and what the impact could be. Changes to capped drawdown tables Capped income drawdown involves taking a pension directly from a fund instead of buying an annuity. However, there’s a limit on the maximum amount […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up