New Home Conveyancing - Property information questionnaire

The separate PIQ for the sale of new homes is identical in most respects to the PIQ required for homes that are not new. However, it is recognised that some of the questions and information described in the non new home PIQ would not be appropriate for the sale of a brand new home that has never been occupied. The definition of “new home” is contained in HIP regulation 2

Part 1 of Schedule 12 of the HIP regulations describes the general provisions concerning the PIQ for new homes. Paragraph 1(1) provides that the PIQ must contain:

• the title and statement set out in Part 2 of the Schedule (see below)
• the information in paragraph 3 of Part 2 (see below) and
• the responses to the questions set out in Part 2 completed by the Seller

Paragraph 1(2) only applies to leasehold sales and provides that, in these cases, the PIQ must also contain the information and questions set out in Part 3 of the Schedule (see below) together with responses to the questions completed by the seller.

Part 2 of Schedule 11 of the HIP regulations describes the general information that must be included in every PIQ, the questions and, where appropriate, the answers or statements that should be provided by the seller in response to the questions. Paragraph 2 provides that the PIQ must have the title “Property Information Questionnaire” at the start of the document followed by a statement. The statement explains that the form should be completed by the seller and should be read and understood as though this is the case. It also explains that the seller may not necessarily be the owner.

Sellers ( normally developers ) are advised that the answers given in the form should be truthful and accurate and that the sale could be endangered if incorrect answers are given, They are also advised that the form is intended to complement other information, e.g. guarantees for work etc. and that these are likely to be required at some stage of the sale. The statement at the end of the PIQ advises that the seller should inform his conveyancing solicitor or conveyancing lawyer or estate agent of any changes that would affect the information given in the PIQ.

The statement advises that estate agents are responsible for ensuring that the HIP includes a PIQ but will not be liable for the content of the form under the Property Misdescriptions Act 1991 if the form has been completed by the seller.