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Govt slammed over &#39shoddy&#39 seller&#39s packs

Len ders claim the Government&#39s compulsory seller&#39s packs are shoddily designed, badly tested and likely to disrupt the market.

The packs, designed to speed up the housebuying process for people selling their homes, came under attack during the Council of Mortgage Lenders&#39 conference this week.

CML director general Mich ael Coogan claimed the pilot trial for the packs had been a failure and that the Government should not introduce them without a more robust study. Results of the pilot, held in Bristol, were published rec ently, with the Government claiming it “confirmed consumer support” for the packs, which contain essential information on the seller&#39s property. They are to be introduced in 2003.

The Government&#39s claim was mocked by the industry, with lenders, IFAs and estate agents involved in the trial accusing the Government of spinning negative results.

Coogan poured further scorn on the Government, saying trial packs were free but will be £500-£700 when they are used for real. Lenders also accuse Parliament of being unable to give the packs away as just 60 packs were used in Bristol compared with a target of 250.

Coogan said if the packs do not work in a buoyant market in Bristol when they are free, then “what would happen in markets with low demand and low-value properties and when consumes have to pay for them?” Housing minister Nick Raynsford, speaking at the conference, said: “The seller&#39s pack will ensure that all the information a buyer needs is available up front.”

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