The first job for the new coalition has been to sit down and formulate exactly which policies will hold firm from each party. The first document was a fairly short affair outlining some of the obvious areas of agreement.
The only element related to the housing market was the clear statement that Home Information Packs (HIPs) would be scrapped with only the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) remaining. This was not unexpected, as both parties had already stated their intention to do away with HIPs, which have been seen by many as unwanted and ultimately rather pointless.
Whilst the announcement of its demise was therefore welcomed by many, this eagerness to consign the HIP to the scrapheap without any actual detail brought a damaging consequence. Anyone wanting to put their property on the market was still required to take a HIP. This had the effect of leading potential sellers to stall placing their property on the market to understandably avoid paying £300-500 for a HIP.
This of course is the last thing that a fragile property market needed so swift action was required. Thankfully that call has been heeded and the need for a HIP has now been suspended with immediate effect.
The only requirement now is to have commissioned an EPC before putting the property on the market. For more information on the ins and outs of the HIP suspension take a look at the Communities and Local Government website.