Are replacement HIPs on the way?

Are replacement Home Information Packs (HIPs) on the way? Not quite – but more upfront information is coming

I am currently creating a directory of law firms (Bold Legal Move) that will take instructions from a property seller/estate agent when a property is first marketed. Ideally, the firms will then proceed with ID and anti-money laundering (AML) checks and maybe even begin compiling a Property Transaction Pack (PTP). I have no intention of being prescriptive about what a PTP should contain or what a firm should charge (if anything) to compile it. That will be entirely up to them.

Why am I doing this?

•    If conveyancers do not start providing information up front, others (competitors) will

•    Providing information up front is on the government’s agenda

•    Using the “legally dead time” when a property is being marketed is sensible

•    Some estate agents want to embrace the upfront information concept but say they cannot find conveyancing firms to work with

•    To help reduce the time from offer and acceptance to exchange

•    To reduce fall through rates

•    To make the home buying and selling process become less stressful

•    And last, but not least, because material information for property listings has been announced

Estate agents will need to include all the required information before a property is listed on a property portal, including restrictive covenants.

The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) will require that a property’s council tax band or rate and the property price and tenure information (for sales) be included on all property listings by the end of May this year and these data fields will start to appear on portals over the coming weeks.

James Munro, Senior Manager of NTSELAT, has said he is keen for conveyancers to get involved earlier. He appreciates that obtaining professional advice on, for example, whether or not a restrictive covenant is enforceable etc, will be vital in some cases.

There will be a nominal fee charged to add a firm’s details to the directory. The details will include their logo, a website link, contact details, and a short description of their PTP (or whatever they decide to call it) offering. However, the setting up fee will be reduced for any firm registering to attend our summer conference on the 28th June. It is my intention to officially launch Bold Legal Move at our conference.

All a seller (or estate agent) will need to do is enter the postcode of the property they are selling into the directory search bar (or a county name) and set the radius they would like to search, and up comes a firm or several firms for them to choose from.

Please let me know (on a no obligation basis at this time) if you are interested in your firm being included on the directory and I will provide more information shortly.

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