The conveyancing sector underwent an array of regulatory changes during 2019 from new standards to uphold through to price transparency, this involves companies displaying price information on their website.
Future Conveyancing Processes
However, processes need further evolving or adjustment over the coming year and years beyond. With every single company considered to be within the top 100 law firms experiencing some form of cyber attack. IT teams and their servers will need to be prepared for a continued onslaught to protect information and client funds.
Anit-money Laundering Crackdown
The fifth anti-money laundering directive will also be rolled out at some stage in the coming years too, this will require further focus on ensuring clients are indeed who they say they are. Any profession in today’s world that handles vast sums of money will likely be a prime target and conveyancing is no exception.
The National Crime Agency has commented on the fact that conveyancing solicitors are at the forefront of money laundering attempts and therefore prevention. Risk assessments have been a government regulation and legal requirement for almost three years and firms may benefit from a further review to ensure compliance is maintained.
Renewed confidence in the property market across many areas of the UK should result in a higher number of instructions and potentially, therefore, recruitment within the sector.
This may be felt earlier in 2020 than later, heavily dependent on how trade negotiations with the European Union play out on the daily news. A no-deal scenario will see any of that confidence quickly eroded but a smooth transition phase could lead to a steady stream of property sales in the short to medium term.
How Tech will Support Property Solicitors
The vast majority of property solicitors also expect to invest heavily in technology in the short term, driven largely by client habits and many people now wanting to closely follow their sale or purchase online. All conveyancers on the Your Conveyancing Solution panel will provide online case tracking capability so you can receive updates when convenient for you and your lifestyle.
This is also due to a growing trend of movers utilising the services of larger, national conveyancing firms, moving away from using local firms in some but certainly not all cases. The years ahead will provide the ever evolving online platform the opportunity for purely digital conveyancing experiences and a potentially quicker process from start to finish, thus those firms with this offering likely appearing more attractive. Therefore, shifting business models and introducing modern software in order to accommodate clients is another high priority for conveyancers for the year ahead. Making the experience better for clients must be of paramount importance, communication will remain a key point as it should do.
Reform may also be on the horizon as a government with a sizeable majority may see it fit to try and modernise a rather dated transaction process, administering changes to try and attempt to reduce completion timescales and in turn sales that fall through.
All in all, much to consider and work through as is always the case for this key component in the life of buyers and sellers alike.
Disclaimer: The article above is an opinion piece based on what may happen in the conveyancing industry during the current calendar year. Comments could be predictions and should not be relied upon.