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Hunters Law
2nd November 2023

Might property lawyers actually be listened to by the government?

Might property lawyers actually be listened to by the government?
Scott Battram
Scott Battram
Senior Associate

Amongst the vast ideas that have been put forward by the government's stakeholder group (the Home Buying and Selling Group), to me the simplest and possibly most effective one, is for sellers to instruct conveyancers before marketing their property. 

This is something that I, and a number of my colleagues and peers within the industry, have been calling for many years. I would also go so far as to say that it should also be the same for buyers. 

In today's market, property transactions often seem never-ending due to delays caused by a multitude of reasons. This can lead to, what I constantly refer to, as ‘bored’ buyers who have ‘fallen out of love’.

However, one thing I believe can keep things going, is for the seller’s solicitor to provide a comprehensive and considered sales bundle at the beginning of the transaction. Then, at the very start, the buyer’s solicitor can submit searches and raise enquiries whilst the searches are awaited. 

The discussion paper drafted by the Home Buying and Selling Group states that the average transaction is ‘210 days… from sale agreed to completion'. It seems to me, total madness that a seller or buyer can, on average, potentially be living in limbo for the best part of seven months. 

Fingers crossed that 2024 (yes, I have already mentioned next year) will be the year that changes are made to really benefit the transactional nature of buying and selling properties.