home information packs

Home Information Packs have been suspended

The Government has announced the suspension of Home Information Packs with immediate effect from 21 May 2010.

Suspension of Home Information Packs: Questions and Answers

home information packs

Please note that the Home Information Pack duties are suspended with immediate effect from 21 May 2010. This means that homes marketed for sale on or after this date will no longer require a Home Information Pack. However, (Energy Performance Certificates) are still required.

This is what an EPC looks like.

I am just about to put my house on the market. Do I still need a HIP?

The duty to have a HIP has been suspended from 21 May. This means homes put on the market on or after that date will no longer need a HIP. However, you will need to have commissioned, but not necessarily received an Energy Performance Certificate before marketing can start.

What do you mean by "commissioned an EPC"?

This means that a seller or a person acting on their behalf i.e. an estate agent must have instructed an accredited Energy Assessor to carry out an energy performance assessment.

Who or what is an Energy Assessor?

This is someone who is accredited (regulated) to provide energy assessments on buildings. HIP providers may be able to provide this service as long as they are accredited under scheme as an energy assessor.

I have ordered a HIP but have not received it yet - what should I do?

You should contact your HIP provider as soon as possible. The duty to have a HIP will be suspended on Friday 21 May and homes put on the market on or after that date will not need one, although you will still need to have commissioned but not necessarily received an Energy Performance Certificate before marketing can start.

My home is already on the market with a HIP - do I have to do anything?

No. Sellers still need to provide an EPC to potential buyers under separate legislation but that should be included in your HIP.

Will I still need an EPC after the suspension of Hips?

Yes. Sellers will need to have or to have commissioned but not necessarily received an Energy Performance Certificate before marketing can start.

Whose duty is it to provide the EPC?

The duty to provide an EPC falls on the seller

When does the EPC have to be provided?

home information packs

An EPC has to be available or have been commissioned before a home can be marketed for sale. It should be provided to potential buyers at the earliest opportunity and before entering into a contract to sell the property.

What is the penalty for not providing an EPC - who will enforce it?

There is a fixed penalty of £200. Enforcement of these requirements is the responsibility of Trading Standards Officers. There are also penalties for not complying with the duty to commission an EPC before putting the property on the market.

How do I get a copy of the EPC done on my home - I never received a copy of my HIP?

If you have had a HIP prepared on your home, the person who prepared your HIP should be able to provide you with a copy of the EPC.

Can I reuse the EPC I received in the HIP when I come to sell my home if it (the EPC) is more than 3 years old?

Yes. Following the suspension of HIPs, all EPCs will be valid for 10 years.

Can I still rely on the HIP produced for the home I am buying?

Yes. There is no reason why a buyer cannot rely on the documents contained in the HIP.

I know there was a HIP produced for the house I am buying but the agent is now refusing to provide a copy - is that right?

Yes. There is no longer a duty on estate agents to provide a copy of the HIP to potential buyers.

Does this mean more expense for first time buyers?

First time buyers will still receive an energy performance certificate from the seller but will now have to commission their own searches. These will typically cost in the region of £150 which is a relatively small amount in the context of overall transaction costs.