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October 29, 2008    

Minister acknowledges HIPs not fulfilling potential

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by Gill Montia
Minister acknowledges HIPs not fulfilling potential

Recently appointed housing minister, Margaret Beckett, has made reference to weaknesses in the Home Information Pack (HIP) scheme in an address to the House of Commons.

The minister made it clear that HIPs are here to stay but acknowledged shortcomings in the scheme mean that the full potential of the packs has not been achieved.

She blamed negativity in the property sector and hostile media coverage for some of the difficulties and asserted that the scheme, even as it stands, does have some benefits.

Ms Beckett took up her post on 3rd October, following a cabinet reshuffle, to become the UK’s third housing minister within nine months.

Opposition MPs are still calling for the packs to be scrapped, or at least suspended during the housing market and economic downturn.

The packs cost an average £350 and their introduction during last year removed many speculative vendors from the market.

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