Home information packs look set to be mired in further controversy following the reaction of the Department for Communities and Local Government to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' freedom of information request.
The Rics filed the request with the government on Monday after claiming to have presented the DCLG with “a range of options” which would build on existing qualifications and regulatory regimes for home inspectors to which it said the government had failed to respond.
It has also accused the government of not publishing the criteria for the approval process for home inspection certification schemes despite already approving the first scheme to be run by Sava.
Louis Armstrong, chief executive of the Rics, says: “Rics has voiced concerns over the transparency of the approval process and the scheme criteria. We also question whether the consultants employed in the Hips project over the last five years have really delivered value for money.”
“It is disappointing that we have to resort to issuing a Freedom of Information Act request to get the government to come clean about the approval process and those involved to ensure that they are acting in the best interests of consumers.”
But the DCLG accused the Rics of wanting a monopoly over the training and accreditation of home inspectors.
A spokesman says: “Rics is upset because it wanted to be the only scheme accredited in the industry. We are talking to Rics but we are not looking for any organisation to have a monopoly.
“There were specific criteria given to both Rics and Sava that set out what we expect from a certification scheme. We want to make sure each scheme has the right qualities."
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Matthew West on 020 7484 9893 or email [email protected].IFAonline
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