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13 April 2010

AHIPP urges Tories to re-consider abolishing Hips

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by Kay Mitchell

AHIPP urges Tories to re-consider abolishing Hips

As part of the Conservative‘s party election manifesto, Shadow Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, has reiterated the party’s pledge to abolish Home Information Packs (Hips) if it is successful in the forthcoming general election.

Hips were introduced in August 2007 and, according to the Government, were introduced to speed up the home buying and selling process.

However, they have been criticised since their inception and many believe they contributed to the fall in house prices that followed for many months after and many estate agents have frequently called on the Government to review the packs.

Mike Ockenden, director general of the Association of Home Information Pack Providers (AHIPP), comments: “The Tory Manifesto pledge to abolish Hips is not only extremely disappointing, but is also rather misleading.

“This constructive course of action is vital and we would urge the party to honour this promise. The future path should be adapting rather than scrapping Hips, to ensure home movers are not cast back into the dark ages,” adds Mr Ockenden.

Mr Ockenden is urging the Tories (if they win the election) to work with them and “further improve the home buying and selling process for consumers.”

In related news, a recent report claimed Hips are not having a negative impact on the housing market.

AHIPP claimed the level of new instructions spiked for two months directly after the introduction of Hips showing that other market forces and seasonal patterns were the influencing factors of the downturn in the housing market.

According to the Association, homeowners started to become wary of the property market in April 2007 – prior to the introduction of Hips, with the number of new homes marketed falling 25% by July of that year.

Furthermore, an Ipsos MORI poll commissioned by AHIPP revealed that 85% of people had not been deterred from selling as a result of the introduction of Hips.

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