Property code well received reveals survey

The majority of major property owners, surveyors and lawyers are willing to implement a code of practice for speeding up property sales, according to a survey drawn up by Clifford Chance property partner Teddy Bourne.

Of the 70 responses received so far to the survey conducted by the Investment Property Forum, which is promoting the code, 67 owners and surveyors said they were willing to implement it, although 14 of them also expressed concern about preparation costs.

The code says that vendors should have most documentation ready before the transaction begins.

Of the 20 property owners who responded, 19 said they would be willing to implement the code and four (BZW Property Investment Management, the Church Commissioners, Morgan Grenfell Asset Management and Raglan Properties) said they were already implementing it.

These results are in apparent contrast to a survey by City firm DJ Freeman, which found that only one of its 55 commercial property fee earners had been involved in a transaction where the code was used.

Bourne, who is also chairman of the Property Forum, commented: “There were more reservations from the advisers, than from the property owners themselves.” He said he had 2,020 requests for copies of the code following an article in The Lawyer.

Bourne is still seeking replies and would like answers to three questions: Have you read the code? (yes or no); if so, would you implement it or suggest clients implement it in whole or part? (yes or no); any additional comments? Fax replies, giving name, company name and function on 0171 600 5555.