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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Conveyancing initiatives put the emphasis on modernisation

Two initiatives appear to show efforts by the conveyancing industry to make its house transaction processes quicker and more appropriate to the 21st century.

Firstly the Conveyancing Association has updated its Conveyancing Progression Training Course which is available for conveyancing industry recruits, agents and brokers.

The changes to the course have been brought about by a number of recent developments, including the increase in stamp duty charges for buyers of additional homes plus the introduction of the Mortgage Credit Directive, and detailed interpretations of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations.

In announcing the updated course, the CA quoted Andrew Dewar, joint senior partner at Curchods Estate Agents, who said: “For new people the course will be hugely useful. For established people like myself there is always something to learn. I think it is about as ’granular’ as you want it to be as an ‘appreciation’. You don't want to turn agents into solicitors. God forbid.”

Secondly, the technology firm Zylpha has launched a suite of eConveyancing forms that claim to “fully automate the key documentation involved in residential property sales.” 

It says the forms could “finally end the costly practice of property teams mailing documents to clients for completion.” By using email rather than Royal Mail, “legal teams can now significantly speed up the process by removing the risk of mail delays or lost post” as well as cutting costs of stationery, postage and storage required in paper-based systems. 

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    All I know is that the public are being sold nonsense 'initiatives' from so many sectors of the property market, even the highest ranks in the conveyancing market, from failed IT systems publicised with £Ms budget, to unnecessary data conveyancing searches.

    We are constantly fixing errors made by other legal 'conveyancing' outfits who fail to employ actual Solicitors and Legal Executives, but instead focus on IT as a substitute. Odd, as the legal work to record a person owning a house contains law, nothing to do with IT.

    Somewhat ironic that many of the factory style outfits operating huge volumes of conveyancing are the ones who don't even reply to email, or even have their individual conveyancer emails on their letterheads.

    Missing rights of access to the house. Breaches of Council planning consents or title deed restrictions are rife, because legal outfits have focussed on the latest way to generate a standard letter to a client in a milli second quicker fashion, than getting the law right with qualified lawyers.

    A mediocre conveyancer with the best IT, is still a mediocre lawyer.

    Solution?

    The public should demand their conveyancer is employed by a Solicitor firm. Sorry but I face conveyancers on an hourly basis each and every day, and that is my advice to family and friends, let alone fee paying public. Don't be fooled by IT systems. It means the conveyancer will br taking on volume, not personal service. And where close scrutiny of legal documents is replaced by a square peg for a round hole study of the legal papers.

    Hope that helps. Good luck home movers, enjoy the new property in 2016.

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