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Home Information Packs set to be demolished by MPs

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04/05/2007

Home Information Packs (HIPs) could be scrapped just weeks before they were due to become compulsory for home sellers on 1st June.

Ministers have had to back down after prolonged and severe criticism from housing professionals, politicians and the public, especially property-owners who faced shelling out in the region of £600-£1,000 to get their packs prepared.

Pressure has been building on the Government for some time and the Conservatives have managed to secure a vote on the issue on 16th May, two weeks before HIPs should be introduced. This is political bad timing for Labour as Gordon Brown will be running his leadership race – or sitting as the heir presumptive – at this time.

The move follows a scathing report by a House of Lords committee that levelled much criticism at the initiative and pointed out the widespread opposition to it.

“HIPs are a terrible idea, badly thought out and badly executed,” said an Essex-based estate agent. “Once the home condition part of the scheme was dropped it became effectively worthless and if the idea is introduced we are left with an administrative nightmare.”

If the motion is defeated in the Commons, the introduction of mandatory packs on 1st June would be shelved and ministers would have to come up with a substitute scheme.

 

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