The future of property acquisition

New technologies are poised to transform the way people buy a home and are already changing the way buyers’ approach each of the three key phases of home buying – researching, financing and purchasing.

With paperless processes becoming increasingly accepted in the property industry, the change is accelerating fast, with significant implications for consumers and the property industry.

Most importantly, this new approach is helping to speed up the process of purchasing property, making it easier and more efficient for buyers and saving them both time and money.

First registered in 2018, the HM Land Registry’s digital service ‘Sign your mortgage deed’ received its 7,000th digital mortgage deed being registered in February 2020. Initially introduced to help reduce paperwork delays, the online service has seen huge reduction in the process with some customers able to complete the re mortgage process in three days, 18 days less than average for a paper transaction.

The new process reduces uncertainty and delays, whilst also helping with compliance by creating an automated audit trail that records the actions of all parties involved. Whilst the service is currently only available to homeowners looking to re-mortgage, the Land Registry is looking to expand the service to all homeowners in the future.

Securing Local Authority data can also be a particularly time-consuming process. The Local Land Charges (LLC) process is a key priority for digitisation, with a pilot scheme launched across five Local Authorities as a first wave in 2018. This will be an important change in the future, with the plan for all 326 Local Authorities within England to be offering digital LLC within the next five to seven years. Key benefits include 24/7 access to data, freeing up council resources and again, dramatically speeding up the process.

The digitisation of all processes could significantly streamline the purchasing of property. The volume of repetitive data gathered when buying a home is huge and can ultimately cause delays, and furthermore cause the purchase to fall-through.

From environmental data to survey reports, perhaps we can imagine a future where information for every address was easily accessible through an online portal for potential buyers at the touch of a button.

At Hubb we look forward to seeing how digital advancements in the industry will continue to streamline and improve efficiency when it comes to acquiring property and how this will benefit the work we do for our investors.