Beware ‘outrageous’ Home Information Pack Charges, Warn Lesters

Date Published 14 September 2009

Lesters, the independent Estate Agents, have announced a market leading price for the supply of a Home Information Pack. Priced from just £230 plus VAT for a Freehold property, they are the best value available locally and more importantly they are sourced from a local supplier.

Senior Partner, Julian Walley said 'Whether you like them or not, Home Information Packs are a reality for anyone selling their home. The issue has become more important recently now that the pack has to be in place before any marketing can commence.'

'With the change in the rules earlier this year, we needed to be confident that our preferred HIP supplier could perform on a number of counts. These were a competitive price, accuracy of information, and speed of delivery. In addition, we were keen to support a local supplier if possible. We are delighted that we have achieved all of our goals.'

Home Information Packs are required for all residential property sales, and contain information upon which a purchaser may rely when making a decision to buy a property. The information includes a Property Questionnaire completed by the seller, a local search, water and drainage search, a copy of the title registered at the Land Registry, and an Energy Performance Certificate. For Leasehold properties, further details of the Lease and Management arrangements will also be included.

Julian continues 'Most Estate Agents will offer to arrange a HIP for you, and prices seem to vary considerably. Freehold HIP prices as high as £450 plus VAT are not uncommon, especially if the Estate Agent offers to ‘defer' the payment for the HIP until the property is sold.

Lesters clients can buy a Freehold HIP for the market leading price of just £230 plus VAT. Incidentally, this is the same price as we are charged for it. Leasehold HIPs generally cost a little more due to the extra information required, but in any event, the price our clients pay is the same as the price we pay.'

A sobering thought from Julian about deferred payment arrangements. 'Why bother deferring an inevitable payment for a few months, when you could end up paying 95% more for the same document? If it takes 6 months before you pay for it, that's the equivalent of an interest rate of 190%! That's substantially higher than your average credit card.'

For more information on Home Information Packs, contact your local Lesters office on Wallingford (01491) 824000 or Didcot (01235) 519888.