NAEA warns of death of 'wait and see' house sales

30 April 2007
The introduction of Home Information Packs (Hips) could eliminate one in five would-be sellers and constrain housing supply, the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) has warned.

According to its research, almost a fifth of homeowners would consider putting their home up for sale simply to see what kind of returns they could get if they saw a neighbour getting good offers for their property.

But the requirement to self-fund the information pack, which can cost homeowners up to £500, could deter casual home sellers, claims the NAEA.

The knock-on effect would be a more constrained sellers' market, exacerbating the problem of short housing supply, it warns.

"A significant percentage of sales that go through start with a seller 'testing the water'," commented NAEA chief executive Peter Bolton King.

"The lack of ability to do this without paying for a Hip first is likely to put many sellers off," he added.

But critics have remarked that most sellers should be thinking very seriously before putting their house on the market, making the sum they may have to pay for compiling a home information pack negligible.

Hips are due to be introduced on June 1st.

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