The Partnership has welcomed changes to government regulations on the introduction of Home Information Packs.
The government has changed its guidelines on the packs meaning that estate agents will now be able to market a property without having local searches and leasehold documents in the pack so long as these have been commissioned.
This follows feedback from the area trials, which highlighted some of the delays waiting for local searches may cause.
From June 1 2007, agents will be able to put a property on the market after obtaining the title information, leasehold information if appropriate, producing an Energy Performance Certificate and completing a sales statement.
They will then be given 28 days with which to complete the production of the HIP, which will include obtaining the local authority and drainage searches and other documents if required.
This will be reviewed in December 2007.
The Partnership says the government had always been concerned about any potential impact of HIPs on the property market.
Peter Ambrose, director of The Partnership, expects that estate agents will be pleased by this announcement.
He says: “During our discussions with agents, we regularly found that one
of their main concerns was the potential impact of having to wait for all the documents to be available before the property was marketed.
“With our legal experience, we were always concerned about the time that local authority and drainage searches would take to be returned.
“We recognised this would mean that agents would be marketing with incomplete HIPs and would have to wait for the 14 day period to expire, creating a somewhat artificial situation which was difficult to justify.
“We are extremely encouraged to see that the government has listened to the concerns of industry and feedback from their area trials and introduced this measure.
“The trials were always designed to test the processes and this change shows they are working as planned.”