Government announces that HIPs will be required for all homes on December 14

Home information packs will be mandatory for all existing properties from December 14, the government has announced.

In addition, from April next year energy performance certificates (EPCs) will be required for newly built homes and commercial property for sale, rent, or under construction.

The government says it has performed “careful analysis” of the market since HIPs were introduced for three and four bedroom properties earlier this year.

Housing minister Yvette Cooper said market conditions were now appropriate for the HIPs scheme to be rolled out to houses with one and two bedrooms.

The government claims that HIPs are taking an average of 7-10 days to prepare, that EPCs are being prepared on average within 2-4 days, and that the average cost of a pack is between £300 and £350.

The EPC element of the pack gives buildings an energy performance rating from A to G. Homes with a rating of F or G will receive discounts and free energy efficiency advice from the newly-established Green Homes Service. The government estimates that about one in five homes are in this category.

Industry bodies have previously warned that there may not be enough energy inspectors to support a roll-out of the certificates to all properties.