In its new Levelling Up White Paper, the government has pledged to improve the home buying and selling process.
In one section, ministers announce they will be “working with the industry to ensure the critical information buyers need to know is available digitally wherever possible from trusted and authenticated sources.”
Making ‘critical information’ available to prospective buyers is something few people, including the overwhelming majority of sellers, would disagree with.
If you are an owner thinking of selling, we strongly recommend you have a legal pack ready for when you put your property on the market.
That is because you want to avoid any tiny details that might derail your sale.
Delays can be costly and frustrating, and a pack that ‘front-loads’ the necessary information can definitely help to reduce the time between agreeing a sale and moving to completion.
Typical information can include title documents, contracts of sale, certificates of compliance with any planning permission or building regulations and evidence of rights of way.
Since 2008, estate agents have been required by law to disclose material information about a property to the would-be buyer.
The details of any new requirements the government wants to bring in will be subject to scrutiny as the White Paper progresses, but the underlying rationale is sound: all parties want to ensure the sale process is fair and efficient.
It is in no-one’s interest that a property sale falls through because, say, a buyer’s loan approval lapses due to a delay in agreeing survey information or a valuation.
People may remember the previous government initiative on mandatory home information packs (HIPs). These were introduced in 2007 but were scrapped just three years later as they were seen by many to be too onerous and expensive for sellers and actually slowed the market down.
More than a decade on, the government must get the balance right.
For our part, and for the vast bulk of sellers too, any sensible moves to share essential information with buyers are welcome as long as they help the home-buying process.
For more information on how Chinneck Shaw can help you prepare and market your home for sale, visit our ‘Sell’ pages. You can also stay up to date on development in the property market by receiving our quarterly newsletter.