Market unsure of single survey and PIP Scottish market reforms

Amanda Jarvis

March 3, 2006

Speaking at the Scottish Mortgage Expo, James Gibson, at Harvie,
Donaldson & Gibson Surveyors, admitted a lot needed to be done before the proposed
2008 deadline. He said: “There is genuine concern about where mortgage
consultants will fit into the scheme. There is a massive amount of work
to be done by the Executive before this date.”

He admitted that lenders would have to adapt their systems to suit the
new proposals and questioned how this would be achieved: “Will lenders start
imposing retentions again? Will lenders be put off by the single survey
reports and how will this information be fed into the underwriter?”
He went on to admit the single survey proposed, as well as the Purchaser
Information Pack, would inevitably lead to a conflict of interest with
the proposals conducted on by the seller.

“Lenders may decide not to offer mortgages on certain properties based
on the reports. Properties may have interest from buyers, but lenders may
decide against providing a mortgage on it because of aspects of the
single survey.” He cited properties above shops as an example.

Alison Hatrick, chairman at the Scottish Branch Committee of the
National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) said the differences between the
Scottish and English systems made the Scottish system a more appealing
market, with the proposals planned to increase buyer knowledge and
confidence. She said: “In England the offer is not generally ‘clean’ and there is
a very high number of transactions that fall through in England, as
opposed to the Scottish system. The new system will mean a survey is conducted
before interest in the market.”

She added the aim of the executive with the proposals was to provide
additional, relevant information to buyers and mortgage intermediaries.
She said: “The aim is to discourage unrealistic asking prices and give
information that the buyer wants.”

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