The estate agents’ trade body has set out three ways conveyancers can further help the sales process.
Propertymark has made the suggestions in a response to the Law Commission, stating three key improvements to conveyancing for agents and consumers.
In March the Law Commission opened a consultation on the latest Programme of Law Reform; that consultation closed in July.
The objective was to identify areas of the substantive law of England and Wales that needed reform, and to help government and law industry decision makers prioritise those reforms.
Propertymark highlighted these elements:
- shifting to vendor disclosure and upfront information;
- digitisation of local land searches; and
- implementation of digitised property logbooks to speed up transactions, helping agents and consumers, as well as reducing fall throughs and the wastage of time and costs.
In 2018, the government made clear its intention to make conveyancing England and Wales “quicker, cheaper and less stressful”. It currently takes an average of 20 weeks to buy or sell a property and over a third of sales fall through at a cost of £250m to consumers.
Timothy Douglas, Policy and Campaigns Manager for Propertymark, says: “There are significant resources in the industry being wasted unnecessarily which could be solved by Propertymark’s proposed changes.
“We want to bring the process into the 21st century, reduce fall throughs, improve customer satisfaction, and avoid cases of mis-selling. These changes could be made with relative ease and should be adopted consistently on an industry-wide level to ensure transparency and uniformity in the conveyancing process.”
In 2020, 31 per cent of failed transactions were due to purchasers changing their minds and a further 11 per cent of sales fell through due to survey findings - these are issues Propertymark argues could be countered in part by providing more information at the start of the buying process.