Anyone wishing to put their house on the market should shop around for their Home Information Pack.An investigation by Channel 4 News claims that up to £100 in commission is being added to the cost of some Home Information Packs (HIPS) by some providers. See agents get hips hidden payments

In one case cited by the programme, a homeowner was paying almost £150 more for a pack than the price originally quoted by the HIP provider.

Another HIP provider told Channel 4 that estate agents were being paid anything from £50 plus M&S vouchers to £200.

From April 6 this year, all sellers need a HIP before they start marketing their property. “Sellers should ask for details of the exact costs and compare this with the cost from a local solicitor such as ourselves to discover if they are being charged more than they should be,” advises conveyancing manager Shelley Burt. “The added benefit of using a solicitor is that we are all strictly regulated and required to follow stringent rules, unlike some other providers.”

When we prepare the Home Information Pack, it remains yours to keep and you can use it with which ever estate agent you chose and even if you change agent. You should check this is this case if you are offered an agent’s HIP or a deferred payment agreement.

Home Information Pack providers charge what the market will take and may also add a commission on top, so it really pays to shop around and go direct to a HIP provider, such as your solicitor.

If you have any questions regarding HIP’s please contact anyone from our property team.

The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. The law may have changed since this article was published. Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice upon their own particular circumstances.