Minister pledges the continuation of HIPs

Posted: 26 Jul 2006 09:58:13 GMT

            Property News - Minister pledges the continuation of HIPs

Ruth Kelly, secretary of state, has given assurances to the Association of Home Information Pack Providers (AHIPP) that Home Information Packs (HIPs) will not be abandoned.

After Tony Blair announced last week that mandatory Home Condition Reports (HCRs) would be dropped from the HIPs legislation, opposition MPs argued that the policy appeared to be falling apart.

In spite of this Ms Kelly had a meeting with Mike Ockenden, director general for AHIPP, and gave him clarification of the government's position on HIPs.

Mr Ockenden stated: "Following my discussions with Ms Kelly I feel assured of her confidence in both HIPs and the HCR and I would offer my reassurance to all those rocked by the announcement made last week.

"Opposition parties may be claiming victory, but their cheers are both premature and unfounded. As careful readers of the Minister's statement will be aware - Home Information Packs will happen on June 1st 2007 and HCRs are still a vital element of the pack."

The government is continuing with the legislation despite former supporters now being against the bill. Consumer watchdog Which?, a formally keen backer of HIPs, came out against the packs last week.

It appears that HCRs will still be a part of HIPs but they will not be mandatory when the bill is first enacted. The government would have to change its position on HCRs to amend the mandatory element of the packs after they are established.

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