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Should tech take over conveyancing? Have your say before it changes for good!

The conveyancing industry regulator wants estate agents to tell it which direction the sector should take as tech takes hold.

Sheila Manchester


Moving home is moving rapidly towards a digital future and one of the ‘casualties’ of this upheaval will be the conveyancing solicitor, whose job is to change radically in the coming months and years.

Regulator the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) says the biggest shift will be away from pushing forward a sale, and instead focussing on charging clients for advice.

It also predicts that review websites like Trustpilot will soon play a greater role in soliciting instruction from home movers.

“Technology will radically improve transparency for consumers about what they are buying and the progress of their transaction,” the report says.

“Because of the Internet of Things, properties will maintain up-to-date logbooks with little human intervention.”

 HIPS again?

The regulator also says giving upfront information about a property at the point of marketing – rather than waiting until later – will be key.

The CLC’s new paper on the future of industry traces how the conveyancing process will change, highlighting questions that regulators, lawyers, estate agents, lenders, technologists and others – will have to grapple with.

Chair of the CLC Dame Janet Paraskeva (left), says: “I think many lawyers will be heartened by the prediction that there will be a greater focus on advisory work as the market changes and that it can be used to create a point of differentiation.

“However, while we can predict certain shifts in the market with confidence – such as the inevitable move to electronic conveyancing – how they play out over the next decade remains uncertain.

“I hope this report will fuel a discussion across the property industry and that conveyancers will grasp the opportunity to shape their future.”

Have your say

Comment by email at [email protected] or visit https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/Conveyancing2030

Read more about the CLC.


January 28, 2020


  1. A comprehensive property DNA pack is long overdue to front load a property, ensuring that from point of sale onward exchange can occur more quickly. But, with 18 weeks being the usual time frame for a sale, to get over the line, despite all the tech in the sector – something is not going right.

    Many in the property sector are scrambling for answers from Land registry and digital street and hackathons and shared perspectives.

    But as Taylor Wessing legal luminaries in the digital field, both in the adoption of tech and embracing proptech firms, stated yesterday, exchanges are governed by the slowest component in the chain.

    Solicitors are risk averse, so tech is a slow go for many legal firms, which means, great have more information on property as in the PIP initiative, but if you have a conveyancing practice who is not tech ready, then you are in for a long haul.

    Piecemeal solutions are helpful, but the antiquated property sector it is a bit like a poor relative of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. The model is not good, so more and more data is fed in and bit by painful bit until the digital ‘brain’ recognises it must change its approach to achieve the required outcome.

  2. There is undoubtedly room for the improvement, in speed and efficiency in the conveyancing process and technology will be very valuable in helping to bring this about, but in such an important and high value industry, the informed and experienced human element will be irreplaceable. Would you want to consult a doctor via technology or by personal contact?

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