The last time Home Information Packs were suggested, there seemed to be less willingness to look at the legal conveyancing process and more resistance to change amongst estate agents.
Now, though, players in the proptech space are shining a light into the conveyancing process and actually looking at leveraging the datapoints it touches.
This remains the fundamental problem, and until the conveyancing process itself is speeded up, electronically or otherwise, cutting transaction times via a Home Information Pack is unlikely to be overly relevant.
One of the reasons identified for the failure was the last minute removal of a statutory Home Condition Report.
For me, one of the biggest problems with a vendor-instructed report is always going to be not necessarily its veracity but certainly its objectivity.
However, if a seller is willing to pay for an HCR upfront, it would seem to indicate that they are more serious about selling.
Perhaps in an era when prospective sellers are getting used to paying for services upfront, like some online agents, perhaps some kind of HCR will gain currency.
For agents, the absurdly slow speed of transactions is taken for granted mainly because they are the only people servicing the process who have a vested interest in actually concluding it, being paid purely on performance.
Suppliers of legal and survey services are paid whatever, and mortgage brokers, although paid on performance, tend to be hamstrung by the ever more panel based legal system applying to those seeking a first charge.
So I suppose it’s possible to surmise that talking about HIPs is really tinkering around the margins of a process that requires a complete overhaul.
The public should know that there’s no use moaning at agents. It is lawyers that the focus should be on, and unkind though it may sound, expecting them to overhaul the system brings to mind a phrase that includes the words turkeys and Christmas.