The show was the first mainstream television programme to address the issue of HIPs in detail. The result, for many brokers, has been consumers calling them, worried about HIPs and their impact on the house-buying process.
Ian Crampton, sales director at Ferndown Ltd, said: “We’ve had people calling wondering if they have to pay out if they are selling their house now. People don’t understand and will end up going to their estate agent two weeks before the launch to ask what’s going on.”
However many HIP providers gave the programme a cautious welcome and pointed to the balanced view presented by ITV, although the fact Kirstie Allsopp, presenter of Channel 4’s Location, Location, Location, who is anti-HIPs, was given the last word upset them.
Allsopp said she was asked by the government to be the face of its HIPs campaign but refused after looking into them, while her closing quote, “Every single homeowner will be a loser with HIPs”, failed to impress HIPs providers.
Karen Babington, sales and marketing director at Easier2Move, believes the show should be a springboard for wider debate. “It’s the government’s job to raise consumer awareness, and now rather than later,” she said.
Mike Ockenden, director-general of the Association of Home Information Pack Providers, declared he wasn’t worried about the shows impact.