Why You Need A Home Information Pack

Effective from the 14 December 2007 in England and Wales, a home information pack will be required for any properties marketed for sale, no matter what size, they are.

One of the main reason these have been brought in is that it has long been thought that the buying process takes too long, causing many potential purchases to fall through. Currently, one in four house purchases fall through before completion. So, the Home Information Pack is being brought in as a way of simplifying and speeding up the whole process.

The Home Information Pack is there to give buyers and sellers alike a clear and up front picture and understanding of what is being bought and sold.

The Pack puts the onus for collating most of the information that is needed to sell a property on the seller.

In practise, this should mean that people would only put their house on the market if they were serious about selling it. It should also mean that the buyer will potentially be able to make a quicker decision on the house and make a quicker purchase.

Who compiles the packs?

The packs are generally compiled by one of the following:

  1. Estate Agent
  2. solicitors
  3. Separate Pack Providers (see bottom of page)
  4. Or you can do it yourself

The packs are also there to help the buyer to reduce the likelihood of there being any surprise problems with the property that may delay or holt the sale of the property all together.

The pack contains:

Compulsory Documents (These are required documents and they normally provides things such as evidence of title and proves that the person selling the property is the actual owner of the property)

Optional Documents (These are classed as “Authorized” documents and they can include such things as the Home Condition Report which gives the purchaser an indication of the state of the property and what, if any, work needs to be done to it).

Below is a list of the compulsory documents that must be included in a Home Information Pack.

Compulsory Items

  • Home Information Pack Index
  • Energy Performance Certificate
  • Sale Statement
  • Standard Searches
  • Evidence of Title
  • Where appropriate, additional information for Leasehold and common hold sales

Next we have a short list of some of the optional documents that can be included in the Home Information Pack (HIP), these include:

Optional Items

  • Home Conditional Report
  • Legal Summary
  • Home use/contents forms
  • Other Documents
  • Where appropriate, additional information for Leasehold and commonhold sales

An authorized document is one that sellers can use to top up their packs voluntarily to include any additional information or material they think will be of interest to buyers. The government has indicated that it will make the Home Condition Report part of the authorized documents, and therefore it will be voluntary, but it is still monitoring it and hoping for an active take up of this part of the pack, because it believes the information it provides will be invaluable to both sellers and buyers alike.

If you are buying a property through an estate agent you must make sure that they show you the HIP for the property, and make sure they show you early on in the buying process before you make any significant decisions about the property.

Are There Any Exceptions

The main exception is that you only need to provide a HIP if you are marketing the property. If you are not marketing it and someone comes along and really likes it and makes an offer, then this would normally be classed as a mutual sale and you would not legally have to provide a HIP. However if you have any doubts then we would recommend you visit the HIP website listed below where you can even obtain a phone number and give them a call with any questions.

If you are a property investor and someone has called you to see if you would be interested in buying their property which they are not actively marketing, then they would not legally have to provide you with a HIP. (This is the case at the time of writing but always check with Home information pack website mentioned below for the most up to date information).

The information on this web about the home information pack was accurate at the time of writing. However, legislation does change and what is included in the packs might change in the future so to check for any updates or to get a more in depth explanation of the packs visit http://www.homeinformationpacks.gov.uk

If you require information on Home Information Pack providers go to http://www.hipassociation.co.uk

**Nothing on this website should be confused with financial or legal advice. If you need this, or any other type of advice, please seek the help of a competent professional. In addition, because real estate laws change all the time and differ from state to state, and even city to city in the same state, everything in these pages should be considered general marketing advice and ideas. Please see link to full Disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

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