HIPs have been suspended

The government has today announced that Home Information Packs are to be suspended from 21st May 2010.  This confirms the Conservative Party’s intention stated prior to the election. The Energy Performance Certificates will continue, as they are a European Union directive, and will be valid for 10 years.

Private Water Supplies Regulations Change

From January, 2010, there has been a reshaping of the law forcing Local Authorities to carry out a risk assessment and to test all Private Water Supplies in England and Wales.

This will affect every property with a private water supply, except an individual (non commercial) property where the owner has not requested an assessment.     To read more click here.

March Property Lending Figures Released

The rate of the recovery appears to have stalled according to figures released by the Bank of England for March 2010.

The net lending secured on dwellings increased by £0.3 billion, well below the February increase of £1.8 billion and the previous six-month average of £1.5 billion.  The twelve-month growth rate was unchanged, at 1.0%.

To read the rest of this article, click here.

Inflation Figures released for March 2010.

The Consumer Prices Index, which is used by the government to measure the annual inflation rate, rose to 3.4% last month (March). It was 3% in February. The increased price of petrol and diesel, and the knock-on effects of this on other sectors, is blamed for the increase. Also, the bad weather in January forced the price of certain produce up, as some vegetables became more scarce as a result.

To read more, click here.

Source: Office for National Statistics 20/4/10

Bank of England Maintains Bank Rate

The Bank of England has maintained the help to the economy and the property market by leaving bank rate at 0.5% for another month.  

The Bank Rate was previously changed by a reduction of 0.5 percentage points to the current 0.5% on 5 March 2009.  This will no doubt encourage the property mortgage rate for the majority of lenders to stay at relatively low levels. 

Building Survey and Valuation data has shown that the general property market is relatively active for those able to pay larger deposits.  The extent of the recent stamp duty changes on property sales has yet to be accurately established.   Many lenders are charging higher rates and limiting the availability of funds to those with smaller deposits available for property purchases.

8 April 2010