01 September 2007
Just in case I am not giving enough of my hard earned money away to the government the process of moving house has just got more expensive - and I am not referring to the £50 parking fine I picked up this morning in Wandsworth, having assumed that whole borough has no parking restrictions on a Saturday. No, I am referring to the £550 I have had to shell out to pay for a Home Information Pack, or HIP as they are jauntily referred to.
Since HIPs are currently only mandatory if you are selling a 4 bedroom house (soon to include 3 bedrooms) it has been suggested that a lot of people will be describing their 4th bedroom as a study or storeroom, which is a bit daft. On the basis that most people looking for new houses these days go online and search using criteria, one of the most important being number of bedrooms, why would you want to market your house as having one less? In our case, we have ensured that the 4th bedroom is actually presented as a bedroom and not as the junk room that it was a few weeks ago...
So yesterday, we had the energy efficiency inspector over to do his work - which includes measuring all the rooms - something which will be done next week again by the people who draw up the little plans that go on the estate agent's particulars. No doubt the energy efficiency report will note that we have no double glazing, no cavity wall insulation and that our windows release a lot of heat. I will be very surprised if it notes that it is far more energy efficient to live in a house which has been standing since around 1880 rather than to live in a new one, that is centrally located meaning a shorter commute (by public transport) and less of a need to use the car for simple errands (some weeks our car barely moves).
Of course, no one buying our house will give a monkey's about the energy efficiency rating since the cost of heating etc is relatively very low in comparison to the value of the house. Double glazing would also be almost impossible given planning restrictions. If anyone says they do care, then tough, they are not getting a price reduction - in fact I might just charge them extra for being a tosser.