So the DCLG has been consulting on the home buying and selling process, but will they actually listen?
I recently attended a round table discussion set up by the British Property Federation and moderated (very well I might add) by Eddie Holmes of the UK Prop Tech association.
The reason for his being in the chair was that DCLG wanted to know how technology could alter the home buying and selling process.
It was disappointing not to see anyone there from the mortgage and finance side.
However, at a subsequent meeting I had with mortgage broker Andrew Montlake of Coreco, he seemed to feel that most areas of the process (obviously as long as you use a broker) are now easily navigated.
I’m not so sure. Certainly the issue of shrinking over-worked and under-paid mortgage panels that can significantly slow the process, needs to be looked at too.
It was vaguely reassuring to hear almost everyone at the round table agreeing that 80% that agents do to earn their fee is mostly after a sale is agreed.
However, they also believed that the whole process would be heavily improved IF anyone even thinking of selling actually got ALL their paperwork together before they embarked on the process.
Similarly anyone buying should also have all their ducks in a row.
Any agent who doesn’t prepare themselves – and you’d be amazed how some of the august solicitors at the round table felt they were simply deal progressors for agents – should take a long hard look at their practices.
I’ve mentioned them before but conveyancers such as AVRillo don’t win loads of awards for nothing: simple communication and using a strange thing called a telephone to speed things up are still at the heart of getting deals done and progressive companies really do improve the process. DCLG could learn a lot from them.
For me the main way tech can help the buying and selling process is better communications and access to data, but it all requires human interaction to progress. There was a slight feeling left at the end of the round table discussion that there is inertia in the system.
Has everyone got just a bit too comfortable?