PCCB commences inspection of search firms and HIP providers

Press release: 5 November 2007

The Property Codes Compliance Board (PCCB) has formally launched its full inspection and compliance monitoring regime for all private search firms and HIP providers registered with the PCCB.

Following an in-depth 18 month pilot, the PCCB has now begun its inspection and compliance monitoring programme in respect of both the Search Code and the HIP Code, both of which require compliance with the HIP Regulations 2007. The PCCB’s inspection process will focus on:

Monitoring sample search and HIP products (selected randomly by PCCB) of every registered firm for compliance with the Codes and the HIPs legislation
Formal inspections of registered firms via physical audit to include checks on key business processes, documentation and consumer complaints procedures. A risk model will be used to select firms for audit
In addition the PCCB will be facilitating extra Code Compliance workshops to provide further guidance to firms on meeting their Code obligations

The Search Code and the HIP Code provide protection for home buyers, sellers, lenders and conveyancers relying on searches and HIPs as part of the home buying process, and include good practice standards, robust insurance requirements and the independent adjudication of complaints.

Any concerns about compliance by HIP providers or search firms registered with the PCCB as subscribers to the Search and/or HIP Code should be referred in writing to the PCCB:


Sue Scott, Chairman of the PCCB said:

Monitoring compliance with the industry Codes is the principal role of‘ the Property Codes Compliance Board and the launch of these inspection measures sends a clear message to the industry that the PCCB takes its role very seriously and that poor standards in the provision of searches and HIPs will not be acceptable.’

Notes to Editors

The Property Codes Compliance Board was established in September 2006 to independently monitor compliance with the HIP Code and the Search Code. The PCCB has a governing Board, with public interest directors and the Chairman is Sue Scott.

Further information on the PCCB including a listing of all registered firms can be obtained from: Property Codes Compliance Board: http://www.propertycodes.org.uk/.

The HIP Code is sponsored by the Association of Home Information Pack Providers: http://www.hipassociation.co.uk/. The Search Code is sponsored by the Council of Property Search Organisations: http://www.copso.org.uk/.

For further information contact Frank Finch - 07984 228106 - info@propertycodes.org.uk