Friday, March 17, 2006

The ODPM launched there Home Inpsection pack timeline, to see the full report click the following link.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Ian Liddell-Grainger, MP for Bridgwater and West Somerset, has secured a 'Ten Minute Rule Bill' in the House of Commons on 18th April which, if successful, would see the end of the Home Information Pack. The 'Housing Act 2004 Amendment Bill' will provide a focus for debate and expose the weaknesses in the government's case.

Mr Liddell-Grainger says: "I am convinced that Home Information Packs were well intended but always fatally flawed. I am determined to stop the process before it starts in order to save everyone involved a great deal of heartache and hard cash."

Recognising the contribution to HIP opposition made by the SPLINTA campaign Mr Liddell-Grainger goes on: "The weight of evidence against HIPs is mounting fast. SPLINTA has performed a remarkable job in recruiting hundreds of prominent estate agents to the cause. Even the cautious souls in the Law Society and the Mortgage Lending industry are getting stuck in."

The newly created role of the Home Inspector may prove to be a short-lived career. Says Mr Liddell-Grainger: "I got involved when a personal friend told me he was thinking of training as a Home Inspector. He showed me the paperwork. And the huge cost. It looked like a confidence trick. The sad reality of this half-baked scheme is that thousands of innocent individuals are already parting with their pounds to train for a role that has not been properly defined or implemented. They are signing up to training providers and kissing goodbye to almost £10,000 a piece in order to be taught skills inferior to that of a surveyor. They have been encouraged by the Government to believe that new lucrative careers are there for the taking. They have been cruelly misled."

Nick Salmon of SPLINTA welcomes Mr Liddell-Grainger's initiative. "The more MP's of all parties learn about the defects of the HIP proposal the less they like it. Those I have spoken to immediately grasp the fact that the only people who will benefit from HIPs are the commercial organisations being set up to cash in on the annual billion pound market supplying packs. The Home Information Pack - 'Prescott's Penalty' on home owners - is going to be an expensive disaster for the property market. Mr Liddell-Grainger's Bill should therefore be of interest to all MP's and, most importantly, their constituents"

Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Local estate agent Bychoice is celebrating after their national property network, movewithus, was ranked number one property network in the league table of property Affinity Groups and Franchise Operations published by Estate Agency News. The network, which recently announced it has recruited over 1000 members across the UK, is quickly becoming one of the largest and most successful networks in the country and was responsible for the sale of property worth £22.8 billion in 2005. Further expansion is planned for 2006 and membership is expected to grow to 1,500 offices by 2007.

Todd Lewis, Director commented: ‘we are thrilled to be recognised as an important part of the UK’s number one network and that it has passed the 1000th member milestone. Our business is growing and, with the ongoing expansion of the movewithus network, we envisage this trend continuing.’

Nigel Higgins, Director at movewithus, commented: “it is a fantastic achievement to be named number one in the property affinity group league table and to have broken the 1000th member barrier. The rapid growth of our network proves the success and impact our service has made within the property industry. We are looking forward to another successful year of expansion and to continue to develop our service offering in new and innovative ways. ”

Thursday, March 09, 2006

73% of homeowners will think twice about selling.

9 March 2006

NAEA research shows major consumer concerns on introduction of HIPs
- majority say no to the cost and 73 per cent will think twice about selling

Consumer research published today by the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) supports the association’s concerns over Home Information Packs (HIPs) and reveals the general public’s true feelings about the increased cost of marketing a property for sale when the packs are introduced on 1 June 2007.

With the help of an independent research company, the NAEA surveyed 1295 adults throughout England and Wales. The respondents all had an interest in the housing market and comprised existing homeowners and those looking to purchase property within the next five years.

The Government’s guideline cost for collating the pack is between £600 and £1,000. One of the most alarming findings from this research is that a mere 4.5 per cent of respondents felt paying over £500 to collate a HIP was reasonable. In fact, 39 per cent of all homeowners surveyed believe the HIP should cost them nothing at all.

Peter Bolton King, Chief Executive at the NAEA, says: “The Government claims the HIP will be cost neutral. However, this cannot be the case when only 20 per cent of buyers currently bother with any form of survey. With over one third of respondents stating that they should not have to pay a penny to put a HIP together, it is clear that many people are concerned about this additional cost.”

Lack of first day marketing

Once HIPs are introduced, homeowners could be forced to wait up to 14 days while the pack is prepared before being legally allowed to market their property for sale. Only 13 per cent of those surveyed felt that 14 days was an acceptable time to wait and almost half of those surveyed (47.9 per cent) felt they should be able to market their home immediately.

The NAEA has found that buyers and sellers are both apprehensive about this delay. Almost 60 per cent of respondents believe the wait will cause them to miss out on prospective buyers, while 42 per cent are concerned that it will prevent them from buying the property they want.

Peter Bolton King comments: “First day marketing is a fundamental right for every home owner and its removal will have a huge impact. Time and time again we have been telling the Government that the lack of first day marketing will affect housing supply, the overall stability of the housing market in general and the entire economy. This latest survey emphatically confirms that consumers also believe this.

Long term Impact

A further survey statistic of considerable concern to the NAEA is that 73 per cent of homeowners said they would think twice about marketing their home for sale as a result of the mandatory cost and delay in marketing caused by HIPs. Peter Bolton King explains: “One of the biggest concerns the NAEA has about the introduction of HIPs is that it will have a negative impact on the supply of property coming onto the market. A very real consequence of this could be an increase in property values, which would further stunt the growth of the housing market.”

Short term impact

More than half (57 per cent) of the homeowners surveyed said they would consider putting their home on the market prior to 1 June 2007 to avoid paying for the HIP. The biggest concern for homeowners on this subject, however, is that they will have to pay for the HIP whether or not the property sells. Peter Bolton King says: “This will undoubtedly create an artificial impact on the housing market by increasing the number of properties for sale prior to the introduction of HIPs. The proposals are complex and the Government has decided to introduce them at the busiest time of the year for estate agents, against our recommendations.”

Awareness of HIPs

Almost half of the adults surveyed were completely unaware of HIPs and their consequences. Peter Bolton King comments: “This is of extreme concern to us, as HIPs will become mandatory in just 15 months time and will increase substantially the cost of selling a home. Clearly the Government has a long road ahead in terms of communicating the implications of the packs to the public.”

And finally…

Peter Bolton King concludes: “This research confirms many of the fears the NAEA has had about HIPs for some time now. I urge the Government to take heed of this research and again consider the practical implications of introducing HIPs to the public on 1 June 2007.”

- Ends -

About the research

This research for the NAEA was carried out online by between 24 February 2006 and 28 February 2006, amongst a nationally representative sample of 1295 UK adults aged 16 plus. is a leading market research organisation, carrying out consumer, corporate and niche market surveys online amongst a 50,000 plus member panel. is a member of the BMRA (British Market Research Association), follows the codes of the MRS (Market Research Society) and is fully registered and compliant with the Data Protection Register, as well as being the preferred research supplier of the PRCA (Public Relations Consultants Association).

About the NAEA

The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) is the UK’s leading professional body for estate agency personnel, representing the interests of approximately 10,000 members who practice across all aspects of property services both in the UK and overseas. These include residential and commercial sales and lettings, property management, business transfer and auctioneering.

The National Association of Estate Agents is dedicated to the goal of professionalism within high street estate agency. Its aim is to reassure the general public that by appointing an NAEA member to represent them they will receive in return the highest level of integrity and service in both sales and lettings. Each NAEA member is bound by a vigorously enforced Code of Practice and adheres to professional Rules of Conduct. Failure to do so can result in heavy financial penalties and possible expulsion from the Association.

Editorial contacts:
Peter Bolton King, CEO
T: 01926 417750
M: 07793647219
Phoenix plc:
Kirsty Marshall
T: 01372 370 850