On 14th February 2007, the Government introduced legislation stating that every home placed on the market for sale must have a Home Information Pack (HIP).
The HIP was supposed to bring together valuable information at the start of the property sale process such as a sale statement, property information questionnaire, local searches, evidence of title, title plans and an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Because a valuable element of the HIP had been left out of the pack - a Home Condition Report (or survey) - HIPs were widely disliked and discredited.
The Government suspended HIPs on the 21st May 2010, but because of European Union directives, an EPC must still be commissioned prior to marketing a property. EPC's provide information on the level of energy efficiency of a property and advice on how to cut CO2 emissions and fuel bills (saving money and protecting our environment for the future if we were all to act on the advice).
It is a legal requirement that an EPC has been commissioned prior to offering the property to the market for sale or to let. The EPC must be available for public display within 7 days of the marketing commencing.