PCCB Reports Good Compliance with the HIP and Search Codes of Practice

Press release: 29 April 2008

A recent desktop audit of personal searches and Home Information Packs (HIPs) produced by firms registered with the Property Codes Compliance Board (PCCB) has revealed good levels of compliance with the Search and HIP Codes of Practice respectively.

Chairman of the PCCB, Sue Scott said: “The personal searches and HIPs we reviewed showed generally good levels of compliance with the Codes with most instances of non compliance being the result of a lack of understanding or care, possibly caused by lack of familiarity with the Code requirements. Training or minor modification to business processes and procedures should easily and quickly rectify these issues. PCCB has already published appropriate guidance to registered firms to assist them to achieve improved compliance.”

The individual audit results will be confidentially shared with the registered firms concerned and will also be used to develop PCCB’s risk model and thereby help determine inspection priorities for the future. Further information will be communicated to registered firms at the regular Codes Workshops hosted by the Code sponsors, the Association of HIP Providers (AHIPP) and the Council of Property Search Organisations (CoPSO).

Summarising, Sue Scott commented; “This desktop audit has been tremendously valuable to both PCCB and registered firms and we will continue to audit all firms applying to register under the Codes. In addition, PCCB’s physical inspection compliance activities are continuing apace. These more comprehensive inspections are revealing similarly good levels of compliance and PCCB will soon be releasing anonymised case studies to illustrate typical compliance and examples of good practice amongst registered firms.”


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 Codes 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. 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: www.propertycodes.org.uk.

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