More houses for sale as HIPs axed
Scrapping controversial Home Information Packs has given a boost to the supply of houses for sale in Kent and Medway. That’s the verdict of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in its latest UK housing market survey. HIPs for every home on the market were made compulsory by the previous government, but were axed by the new coalition. Critics always claimed they deterred owners from putting their homes on the market speculatively. Others said they were a waste of time and money. Now surveyors report the decision to abolish HIPs has pushed up supply in the county, with most reporting a rise in new instructions, a trend they expect to continue “in the near term”. More than 70 per cent of surveyors nationally expect the decision on HIPs to lead to higher levels of new instructions with the increase in supply anticipated to be about 15 per cent. Despite fear of cuts, many surveyors in Kent are considerably more optimistic than last month. RICS South East director Amanda Gardiner said: “Surveyors are confident sales will continue to pick up over the summer months. The increase in supply as a result of the abolition of HIPs is helping to support this optimism.” A majority of RICS members in Kent also report house prices in the region have risen, unlike other areas of the country.