Here come the HIPs



How can I help?

Quite. So you simply ask the agent to find out.

The problem is that it is adding a bunch of unnecessary cost and nonsense and involves the government in private transactions.

That's fine. Why should everybody else shoulder the cost for something is generally not useful because it can be simply handled in other ways that do not result in a package of useless rubbish (energy certificate) and information that anybody can obtain very easily through existing means?
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tim..... wrote:

ISTM there is a lot of information that could be provided in advance that is unlikely to change before exchange of contracts. AFAIK under the existing setup the searches are only done once and, if the deal drags on for months, information provided by solicitors could in theory also be out of date. IMO there is nothing wrong with the seller being legally obliged to provide as much detail as possible in advance, particularly where leasehold flats are concerned.

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That's all I've been saying through this tread, and everyone thinks that I'm a sucker waiting to be conned becuse of it.
tim
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On 2007-08-20 11:05:09 +0100, Stuart Noble

- The HIP is a pack of information sponsored by the vendor. This means that it cannot be relied upon as a source of information any more than simply asking them. No gain there.
- The sensible purchaser will independently check all information anyway.
- Are lenders trusting these reports? It seems not.
- One of the main selling points of the legislation is the energy profile of the house. Is this a major purchase criterion for most people? No. Will it alter market behaviour? Unlikely? Will people implement energy saving solutions that make a worthwhile difference in order to sell a property? Probably not, except for loft insulation.
- The sample certificate on the government web site shows what a farce the energy certificates are. They say that most properties will be in bands D and E. The sample typical property can benefit from two improvements costing less than 500 - being cavity wall insulation (saves 411pa) and (wait for it.....) low energy lighting saving 11 pa. A hot water cylinder thermostat saves 102pa and a condensing boiler 323. The rest of the certificate is waffle. The cost of producing the report could have gone a fair way towards addressing the most significant of these.
- Are the people carrying out the "surveys" experienced as well as being "qualified"? Some of the schemes provide home inspector "qualification" with fast track courses of a year. For Energy Assessors, it appears to be a fraction of that.
- The compulsory information provided is trivial and can easily be obtained by means already in place - e.g. a low cost request to the Land Registry.
- Estate agents will offer bundled deals including the HIP. Fairly obviously, this will be the cheapest possible solution with minimum information.
- The optional parts such as Home Condition Report are not a replacement for a survey sponsored by the buyer; any more than the Legal Summary replaces their own legal advice.
- One can DIY the pack with the only outside involvement over and above what already exists being the Energy Performance Certificate. Limited value.
- The conditions related to pack validity are so loose and poorly worded that they have no credibility. In practice the seller can continue to use the same pack indefinitely.
- Redress is through government sponsored schemes. These are always effective. Not.
In summary, a completely pointless exercise.
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On Mon, 20 Aug 2007 13:48:07 +0100 Andy Hall wrote :

Here I agree with you. I would expect to be to take a fridge at random and get an energy figure within a very few percent of that stated on the label - under standard test conditions of course. What a house EPC says is far less reliable and is not going to change anyone's buying decision - not until it feeds into Council Tax anyway (logically if you can pay from 0-300 for parking a car in my street, why not be charged more CT if you have a Band D or E home?).
All the evidence to date seems to suggest that different surveyors are likely to return significantly different energy figures for the same house, perhaps through measuring error, more likely because their best guesses of what cannot be seen do not agree.
My own place is Band C done by my own calculations, but if I ever have to get an EPC I am not at all sure whether the person who does it would pick up the cavity wall insulation, or 25mm polystyrene and plasterboard dry lining on the old part - there are 11 walls, five construction types! But they'll probably get the condensing boiler and 90% low-energy lights right <g>.
If TPTB wanted to give people an idea of what a particular home would cost to run, a better approach would arguably have been to require energy companies to store billing data in a way that when asked they could say that for the last three years the average annual energy usage was x kWh electric and y kWh gas. Not 100% reliable either, but potentially cheap and easy.
--
Tony Bryer SDA UK 'Software to build on' http://www.sda.co.uk


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You would have to tell them (and would be qualified to do so) but they would have to take your word for it (or not). I wonder whether their computer program would have the U value for 25mm of polystyrene plus plasterboard (and solid wall ?).

At least the boiler is worth noting......

For this to be useful, it would have to record usage pattern as well.
For example, in four houses in a street, otherwise identical:
- A has two dinkies who are out all day at work
- B has a someone working at home three days a week. He uses more energy at home but less on transport. carbon footprint of that?
- C is an old lady who uses one room and a one bar electric fire.
- D is a family with two young children under 3.
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said:

And even something as simple as how warm they want the house to be.
I have a low usage of energy for my profile simply because I don't like to be in warm house, catches out all the utils.
tim
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In other words, the energy performance certificate is as much use as:
- An ashtray on a motorbike
- A chocolate teapot
- A one legged man at an arse kicking party
(Choose from the above).
The typical savings figures given are misleading.
The EPC arrangement is only interesting if it causes people to take an action.
- Will they select a house based on energy performance? Almost certainly not
- Will they implement the recommendations of the report? Probably not.
Since the figures presented are based on a computer calculation, a better solution than this EPC stuff, would be to put up a web site with the same calculator and let people use that. It would then link to supported and other schemes for chosen improvements to be made.
Incentivising people who may be interested rather than fining people who are not is a much better solution but of course does let go an opportunity for government micromanagement of peoples' private affairs.
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That and revenue generation...
--
"Religion poisons everything."
[email me at huge huge (dot) org <dot> uk]
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wrote:

people
affairs.
On the new just now they say HIPS are thrown again into confusion with two major lenders refusing to accept the searches contained within them. I didn't hear the full story so presumably there is more to come.
AWEM
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On 2007-08-22 15:01:44 +0100, "Andrew Mawson"

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6958111.stm
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Andy Hall wrote:

So a hip contains a useless energy cert, results of searches that "However, the lenders said they just wanted them vetted by a solicitor.", you will continue to pay for as a buyer just like before, and er, what else again?
--
Cheers,

John.

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John Rumm wrote:

One assumes the powers that be sounded out the banks before before they hatched the plan....
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On 2007-08-23 12:16:34 +0100, Stuart Noble

Possibly, but then the approach is wrong. It doesn't require legislation to achieve that. If there were really an advantage, the market would have addressed it before now.
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Andy Hall wrote:

In a sense all legislation comes about because of the limitations of the market. The market would be quite happy for me to club my neighbour to death, but some busybody in government prevents me from doing so. In this case the market has failed to respond to public demand for a simpler conveyancing process because it isn't in the interests of solicitors, surveyors and the rest of the crew. The fact that this particular legislation is a joke doesn't mean that none is required
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On 2007-08-23 14:21:03 +0100, Stuart Noble

No it comes about because politicians can see a micromanagement opportunity with little expense and/or civil servants can see a job creation/preservation scheme.

Actually the market wouldn't. Therein is a basic principle of freedom, which simply stated is that you should be able to do exactly what you like provided that it doesn't impinge on the equal right of your neighbour to do the same. Legislation comes into play when non-involved parties believe that they know better than you and your neighbour as to what that is.

It doesn't require legislation to achieve a better conveyancing process other than to adopt the principles used virtually everywhere else - binding agreements at the outset.

In this case, none is.
As you pointed out, the arrival of fixed priced conveyancing has had an impact on the cosy coterie of the traditional participants. Market force, not legislation.
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Andy Hall wrote:

Perhaps a trifle on the cynical side

Without legislation the free market naturally evolves into crime.
Legislation comes into play when

You may be right, but I've never personally seen such an agreement, so I don't know whether I'd accept it. Would it be a universal set of contingencies for everyone setting out precisely what reasons would be valid if you wanted to withdraw? Could I stipulate different reasons to yours?

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On 2007-08-23 18:05:17 +0100, Stuart Noble

I know, but TBH, I can't see anything in this that leads me to believe that the motives are any better than those of Part P of the Building Regulations.
Nobody has mentioned other uses for the energy data. is that confidential to the parties involved or does the government get to see as well? This would be the unspoken and insidious dimension, also present in other legislation where the marketed story doesn't hold water.

No it doesn't, it evolves into an expanded economy and more self sufficiency for the population, both of which are worthwhile.

The general thing is a boiler plate that covers most issues, supplemented by regional and local variations. The individual purchaser can then add his own. If he makes the potential reasons for withdrawal too wishy-washy, it weakens the value of his offer in the eyes of the vendor. This makes the whole thing self regulating, as it should be.
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It evolves into chaos, as can be witnessed in all lawless society.
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What complete and utter cack.
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