The turbulence in the housing market is thought to be behind Caroline Flint's decision to delay Hips implementation

The final roll out of Home Information Packs to home buyers in England has been delayed by six months the Communities Department in order to “smooth the implementation of the scheme.”

Housing minister Caroline Flint said yesterday she was extending provisions which allow home owners to put their homes on sale without a Hip as long as all the relevant documents had been ordered.

Flint is also extending the temporary measure allowing Hips that refer to leasehold properties to have to include the lease document only.

Press reports say the decision, to delay roll-out by six month until December 31st, was taken by ministers in the light of the current housing market turbulence.

In addition Flint laid out a host of other measures designed to amend and improve the working of the much-criticised Home Information Packs. She said the government would work with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, the Law Society and the National Association of Estate Agents on a “new set of standards on what consumers should expect from property professionals in the home buying and selling process.”

Flint said: “But we want to do more to improve the Hip and the home buying and selling process for consumers. Developing a new set of standards for industry is an important next step in further ensuring all consumers get the highest quality of service when buying or selling a home. We also want to ensure all consumers are seeing the vital information in a Hip early in the process so they can fully benefit."