An overwhelming number of letting and sales agents back the idea of more so-called Material Information on property details.
That’s according to HOP - the Home Owner’s Passport - which says 83 per cent of agents quizzed in its survey endorsed the concept.
The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agent Team has already revealed the need for what it calls Part A information and is due to reveal details of the Parts B and C Material Information later this month.
Some 44 per cent of agents surveyed said they were likely to obtain the information directly from the vendor but HOP says that whilst this is fine for the limited requirements of Part A, it is likely that Parts B and C will include data such as restrictive covenants and easements - typically too expert for vendors to know about.
The next two preferred sources of the data for the agents that responded to the survey were from a conveyancer or direct from an existing CRM provider; and HOP believes these may well become more reliable option for agents. It says many lawyers are already starting to provide pre-offer instructions and title fix services, and tech onboarding solutions such as HOP can provide API integrations of the required data directly into CRMs.
HOP director Sally Holdway - also a practising conveyancing solicitor - says: “As we move towards the inclusion of what has traditionally been seen as ‘conveyancing’ data in the new rules, our advice to agents is to obtain this information either directly from lawyers, or from the same sources the lawyers use.
“The potential sanctions for getting this wrong are significant for agents, so it is important to get it right first time. As we have built our Material Information Reports in HOP we have been careful to do it to existing conveyancing standards, so agents can trust the results.”
The same survey apparently reveals that 72 per cent of lettings and sales agents support contracts packs being available pre-offer, and these being attached to a badge such as ‘Contract Ready’ so consumers can readily identify properties where the paperwork was in place and ready to go.
However, just 50 per cent of agents were aware of the details of Parts B and C requirements, and 94 per cent want more training.