A new report suggests that the residential conveyancing market has shown little sign of growth due to a period of fluctuating trends over the last few years.
According to the IRN Research UK Conveyancing Market Briefing 2018, economic trends, the decision to leave the European Union and reform of Stamp Duty has led to a decline in property purchases, driven predominantly by a fall in residential transactions.
The study doesn’t paint a completely negative picture, however, with some figures indicating there has been growth observed in the volume of work; earlier this year, IRN found that 66% of conveyancers reported an uplift in the volume of work observed over the last 12 months, up from 62% in 2017. Whilst most of those surveyed (60%) observed revenues increase rather than decrease, this proportion was down on last year’s 66%.
Whilst the recent trend of national conveyancers emerging in the marketplace was made clear, the research highlighted that their share remains relatively minimal; despite dealing with over 20,000 transactions annually, the largest conveyancing firm in England and Wales only represents around 2% of all transactions.
The report also drew attention to several factors impacting the market to a more notable degree; these included the confusion following the Brabner’s case regarding VAT on disbursements for electronic property searches, the ongoing pressure to digitise conveyancing, as well the potential liability in cases of fraud.
The full report can be accessed here.