Legal Updates

Property – Home Information Packs to take effect from 1 June 2007

From 1 June 2007, all home owners in England and Wales will have to prepare a Home Information Pack before putting their home on the market for sale.

The Government’s new Home Information Packs will be compulsory for anyone marketing a home for sale from 1 June 2007, and according to the Government this will allow essential information to be made available to potential buyers up front.

It is envisaged that the Home Information Packs will make selling a home simpler and both sellers and buyers would benefit from the changes to the system.

According to the Government, the benefits the Home Information Packs would bring to Industry are as follows:-

       “…Improving the process of buying and selling by reducing the number of transaction failures and reducing the time taken between offer and acceptance;

            Improving the condition and sustainability of housing stock - Making a positive contribution to the condition and sustainability of the housing stock - by ensuring home buyers and sellers are aware of the true condition of the property;

         A step on the ladder for new generations of home owners - through more affordable entry costs and simpler process for first time buyers;

         Training for the qualification in Home Inspection, for those wishing to add the qualification to their existing portfolio and for those looking to train in a completely new career;

         Joined up processes through industry forging links to provide a seamless service to consumers.”

The Home Information Pack Regulations 2006 set out provisions on the “required” and “authorised” content of a Pack. You are required to include certain documents in the pack where appropriate and authorised documents may be included at the seller’s discretion.

The required documents are:

          An index (i.e. a list of the contents of the Pack)

          A sale statement (summarising terms of sale)

          Evidence of title

         Standard searches (i.e. local authority enquiries and a drainage and water search)

         An Energy Performance Certificate

         Where appropriate, commonhold information (including a copy of the commonhold community statement)

         Where appropriate, leasehold information (including a copy of the lease, information on service charges and insurance)

         Where appropriate, a New Homes Warranty

         Where appropriate, a report on a home that is not physically complete

         A Home Condition Report*

The authorised* documents include:

        Guarantees and warranties

        Other searches.

Please Note:  The Regulations will be amended from 1 June 2007, so that the Home Condition Report will be an authorised part of the Pack.

*”…An authorised document means that sellers can use them to top up their Packs voluntarily to include additional material where they judge that to be of interest to prospective buyers. Although the Government has indicated it will make Home Condition Reports voluntary as from 1 June 2007, it strongly believes that these are likely to prove valuable to both sellers and buyers, and is working with the industry to ensure that there is active take up.”

The Law Society is unhappy about the recent consultation document issued by the Government on 25 January 2007.  See Press Release from Law Society http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/newsandevents/pressreleases/view=newsarticle.law?NEWSID=318414

Further information on Home Information Packs visit:-

http://www.homeinformationpacks.gov.uk/home.aspx

http://www.homeinformationpacks.gov.uk/faqs_contactus.aspx

Home Information Pack Regulations 2006
Home Information Pack Regulations 2006: Procedural Guidance

If you require further information contact us atenquiries@rtcoopers.com

© RT COOPERS, 2007. This Briefing Note does not provide a comprehensive or complete statement of the law relating to the issues discussed nor does it constitute legal advice. It is intended only to highlight general issues. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in relation to particular circumstances.

 

 

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