Estate agents ‘unaware of HIPs’

Amanda Jarvis

March 15, 2006

The first ‘HIP Awareness’ index tracks estate agents’ awareness of Home Information Packs and the issues surrounding them. 

Results of the February HIP Awareness index showed:
– With just over fifteen months to go until HIPs become compulsory, 17 per cent of estate agents do not know what Home Information Packs are. 82 per cent are aware of HIPS and one per cent said they aren’t quite sure what they are.
– 65 per cent of estate agents believe the Government will definitely introduce HIPs as planned. However, following criticism from the industry and the governments U-turn on SIPPs, a quarter are unsure if HIPs would ever see the light of day while 10 per cent are certain they will be scrapped.
– Opinion is divided as to whether HIPs would make it easier or more difficult for a consumer to sell their home. 35 per cent of estate agents feel that HIPs would make the selling process easier while an equal number feel this move would make it more difficult. 27 per cent are not sure how HIPS will affect the process.

Karen Babington, marketing directorat Easier2Move, commented: “HIPs are likely to have a huge impact on the house-buying process and it is worrying to see that almost one in five estate agents are unaware of these packs. We feel that this lack of knowledge is a clear indication that the Government needs to make an announcement as soon as possible as to the implementation timetable and contents of HIPs.  

“This lack of information coupled with the Government’s u-turn on SIPPs last year has led to a situation where over a third of estate agents are sceptical as to whether these packs will ever become a reality. This is not a healthy situation, as it will undoubtedly affect the amount of time and resource that companies devote to preparing for 1 June 2007.

“The general consensus seemed to be that while some agents believe that these packs might discourage some people from listing and make the whole process more complex, many have high hopes for the future. They feel that these packs could have a positive effect on the market by reducing the time taken to buy or sell a property, and the number of abortive transactions.”

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