Home Information Packs (Hips) are to be extended to cover three bedroom homes from next month, the government has announced.
The controversial packs, which include energy performance certificates (EPCs), were introduced earlier this month for four bedroom properties and larger.
They will now be rolled out to three bedroom properties from 10 September after ministers said enough assessors were in place to extend the scheme.
Communities Minister Baroness Andrews said: ‘We are now ready to start rolling out Hips and EPCs to the next part of the market as promised, and improve a home buying and selling process which currently is not working for consumers or the environment.
Energy performance certificates
‘Hips and EPCs can help families to save hundreds of pounds off their fuel bills, and cut a million tonnes of carbon a year. They also have the potential to reduce the millions of pounds wasted by consumers when buying and selling a home, by increasing transparency and competition in a process that hasn’t changed for a generation.’
The government claims that a snapshot survey of leading HIP providers shows packs are taking around five days to produce.
It added that many major estate agent chains are offering HIPs as part of their ordinary fees, while others are charging £300 to £350 plus VAT on an upfront or deferred basis – £200 to £250 of which is already paid for in the current system.