Tell me about HIPs

I am hoping to sell my property later this year. Will I have to supply a HIP?

I am hoping to sell my property later this year. Will I have to supply a HIP?

As from June 1 this year, anyone selling a property must provide potential buyers with a Home Information Pack (HIP). This is a set of documents providing information about a property including energy efficiency (in the form of an Energy Performance Certificate), searches and evidence of title. There are “required” documents that must be included and “authorised” documents which may be included at the seller's discretion.

t Who will prepare the HIP?

Your solicitor or estate agent will be able to arrange for the HIP to be compiled.

I had thought that it would have to include a type of survey, is this correct?

It is no longer going to be compulsory for the HIP to include a Home Condition Report, but the government will encourage sellers to provide this.

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t Can my estate agent market my home while the HIP is being assembled?

A home must be marketed with a HIP at the time the property is put up for sale. In certain circumstances the property can be marketed with an incomplete pack - this is defined in the regulations.

t How long will the pack be valid for?

The HIP is valid while the home is continuously marketed for sale, and the regulations allow for a period where the property might be taken off the market while, for example, it is under offer or to allow a seller to change agents. The main time-sensitive items in the HIP are the local searches.

t When are HIPs not needed?

They are needed at auctions and for barn conversions and for shared ownership properties, but not for right-to-buy properties, nor portfolios of properties.

t How much will a HIP cost?

The cost of preparing a HIP will be determined by market forces. Much of this expense already exists but has been the responsibility of the buyer rather than the seller. The only new elements are the mandatory Energy Performance Certificate and optional Home Condition Report.

t These questions and answers are not intended as a complete statement of the law applicable to these issues. Specific legal advice should always be taken about your own circumstances.