Fresh data from a PropTech firm suggests that 'conveyancer absenteeism' is causing severe delays to property transactions.
When You Move reports that some 30% of over 2,000 homemovers it surveyed experienced an average transaction delay of over six weeks because their conveyancer was not in the office.
The study, carried out within the last month, also claims that one in four conveyancers are out of the office during the most critical periods of a property transaction.
When You Move, a platform which aims to connect movers and agents with conveyancers to increase transparency and improve case tracking, has revealed a number of other figures relating to conveyancers being absent and how this is affecting consumers:
- 25% of consumers whose solicitor was away were not told when they would be back;
- 27% did not know when their property lawyer would return;
- 24% said that their property lawyer was on personal leave, such as a holiday;
- 27% said their case was not worked on while their solicitor was away, delaying the process;
- 29% experienced an average delay of seven weeks due to an absent conveyancer;
- 31% experienced an average delay of eight weeks due to 'other reasons';
- 29% of respondents said that during the sale or purchase of their property, they had to speed up the process themselves by chasing for updates;
- 25% found that lawyers offered the lowest level of customer service that they encountered during major transactions;
- 21% would not use the same lawyer that they’ve used previously due to their poor customer service.
"Ensuring transactions are completed with greater efficiency, transparency and speed is fundamental to delivering a consumer-focused service for all those buying and selling homes in the UK," says Simon Bath, When You Move chief executive.
"Consumers should no longer be put off by the lengthy conveyancing process and the conveyancing industry should be able to stick to its promise of completing transactions by the projected date whether your conveyancer is away or not."