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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Hamilton-Charlton

Government backs property logbooks to speed conveyancing

Government backs property logbooks – The Law Society Gazette advised the government is likely to push sellers to provide more up front information about their property before it goes on the market to make the homebuying process quicker, cheaper and less stressful.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, which has pledged to fix what it considers to be a ‘broken’ housing market, confirmed its intentions at a conference yesterday. A panel discussion entitled ‘Can you really digitise the homebuying process?’ featured at trade association UK Finance’s Annual Mortgage Conference, held at Eversheds Sutherland’s London office.

The ministry’s Matt Prior said that with leasehold properties, for instance, it is not ‘unreasonable’ to tell prospective buyers how many years are left on a lease and what the service charge is. It is ‘ridiculous’ that such information is not provided up front, he said.

Prior said up front information allows people to make more informed decisions: ‘My neighbour moved recently. They’ve got a brilliant stream in the garden. I thought “if it rains, will it flood the garden?” But they’re happy with it. If you know that up front you can make that decision. If it takes weeks for your conveyancer to discover that and you decide you don’t fancy the property being flooded, you will potentially pull out at a later stage.’

The homebuying process currently takes 19 weeks on average, which Prior considers ‘a hell of a long time to wait’. The cost of failed transactions adds up to £270m a year.

To read the full article in the Law Society Gazette, click here.

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