Shakeup in conveyancing with more tech startups

Topics: Conveyancing

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Conveyancing startup When You Move became the latest entrant to the e-conveyancing market last week when founders Peter Goodman and Simon Bath obtained an alternative business structure licence from conveyancing regulator the CLC.

The firm’s announcement describes it as ‘the UK’s first technology-led conveyancing service aimed at revolutionising the process of buying and selling property’.

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The announcement states that When You Move’s proprietary cloud software platform and mobile app will give estate agents, brokers and consumers ‘full visibility of conveyancing status in real time’.

The app will be free to use for consumers, and brokers will not be charged a subscription fee.

Meanwhile, a free, e-conveyancing portal will be unveiled on 5 February.

Free2Convey, developed by Pracctice Limited, has the backing of the Legal Software Suppliers Association, which provides software to around 90% of UK law firms.

Features include a ‘real-time’ conveyancing chain view, online virtual deal room and party verification.

Pracctice Ltd director Matthew Lancaster, who is also LSSA chair, said it was a ‘really exciting and vibrant time for conveyancers’ who were ‘really being pushed forward from a technology point of view’.

Lancaster said: ‘Conveyancers are seeing an increase in their workloads and the first thing they consider is efficiency.

‘It’s a very competitive market. Firms have to work efficiently because they do not want to increase their overheads, but they also need to be competitive on price.’

Readers' comments (18)

  • Never heard of Peter Goodman or Simon Bath but the reality is the CLC have already regulated major entities that are driven by technology so not sure what first really means !

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  • Horay! Another LSG article promoting non solicitors!

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  • Another one-size-fits-all operation for transactions where only the basics are the same and which ignores the individual aspects of every transaction. Thanks goodness I don't do residential conveyancing any more!

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  • we are kept busy with instructions from those who have tried the 'technology' route hate it and will never use it again. They are also so relieved to speak to a real solicitor again that they are much less sensitive to fees. Every cloud has a silver lining!

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  • Anon at 3:30 pm..... I've worked for what I guess would be such a firm. Now I don't. I am, and was, still a real solicitor.....

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  • And the public wants this because?

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  • Dear Anon at 4.00pm because futurologist Professor Susskind said years ago that lawyers were dead. Therefore, very much like the reporting by the Sun of the antics of some weird, religious, apocalyptic sect we have to put up with articles about anything that looks like the futurologist might be correct.
    "Most conveyancing transactions are conducted by Solicitors on the High Street" isn't exciting news.

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  • Interesting to read the comments here. My background is in building technologies for process-led environments (in this case conveyancing) which increase efficiencies, improve the consumer experience and potentially drive employment in sectors that can sometimes benefit from an outsider's view.

    When You Move has been a long time in the making. I've partnered with experts in the field, invested my own money and built a technology that has the potential to change the industry for the better. Our technology is not designed to replace customer interaction, quite the opposite in fact. It's about improving customer service - the lifeblood of all businesses. When You Move makes our conveyancers better organised, therefore freeing up more time to communicate with their customers in the more traditional way should they prefer.

    I'd be happy to demonstrate how this works.

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  • It is interesting to read Peter Goodman's comments concerning his 'When You Move' startup. I worked as a residential conveyancer for many years and am a great believer in using technology to support the conveyancing process. I have used (and designed) support systems since the mid-1980s.

    Providing excellent customer service to conveyancing clients with the support of good technology is nothing new. Assuming however, that a client will automatically allow information they see as confidential to be disclosed in a deal room environment is.

    There have been many attempts over the years, notably by The Land Registry and its Chain Matrix, to impose transaction 'transparency' and they have all failed. Calling law firm clients 'customers' and attempting to reduce conveyancing transactions to the level of buying a can of baked beans just hasn't worked so far - and I think that is because there is no appetite for it among the people paying for a service.

    I've used excellent IT to support conveyancing transactions, but I think the error is in referring to 'clients' as 'customers' and conveyancing as an 'industry'- it is actually a service offered by a professional adviser. That isn't meant to sound pompous, but to reflect what clients actually want when they instruct solicitors - wise and confidential advice; not, at present, deal room 'broadcasting'.

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  • As a "client" who has just gone through this process I find it refreshing that somebody wants to shake up this archaic industry.

    I am very surprised at some of the comments above, no wonder conveyancing is so backwards when the industry fails to embrace change for the positive.

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