At the beginning of March the government released details of the HIPs area trials and the NAEA was infuriated that the CLG decided to try to use estate agents as a scapegoat for the problems of HIPs. However, the NAEA claims a full reading of the findings reveals more than suggested by CLG’s press release.
Peter Bolton King, chief executive, NAEA, said: “The press release concentrated on the sellers’ perception of the HIP. ‘Eight out of 10 felt that it contained everything they expected’. Well I would hope so. It is after all, their house.
“Nowhere did the press release concentrate on the buyers. After all, the legislation was actually brought out for the benefit of the buyer in order to give them upfront information about the property they are looking to buy.”
King believes the report itself indicates why the press release was so limited. “Only 29% of sellers who actually sold a property with a HIP felt it made the process more efficient,” he said.
Only “20% of buyers felt the HIP sped up the buying process and 41% thought that a HIP made the process more difficult”. A massive 76% said the HIP had no effect on their decision to buy.