exchange

Time taken to exchange on a property falling, study reveals

New research from TwentyCI has revealed that the average time to exchange on a property has reduced significantly over the last six months.

Specifically, the time taken to exchange has fallen by 7.06% from 132.37 days in October 2022 to 123.64 days in April 2023.

Source: TwentyCi

“It’s great news that the time to exchange is shortening, which many conveyancing firms are working to tackle,” said Richard Hinton, Director at Pitsford Consulting:

“Our research shows that the time has stretched out over the last six months. thanks to industry wide efforts to drive down processing times.

We have seen some exciting new initiatives and collaborations over the last six months such as the recent Upfront Material Information pilot by residential conveyancers Thomas Legal, which has reduced transaction times reduced by up to 53 days.”

TwentyCi’s research also revealed sizable regional variations in exchange timelines. Northern regions take the least time, followed by the Midlands. The Southern regions take the longest time to exchange. In the North East, it is taking just 115.9 days to exchange, followed by Yorkshire and the Humber, sitting at 116.6 days.

In Northern Ireland, exchange takes an average of 175.9 days, or 5.8 months. In Scotland, the average time to exchange in 2023 was only 93.2 days – just over three months.

Time to Exchange by Region

Region 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Scotland 69.2 77.7 79.9 89.1 93.2
Northern Ireland 116.6 116.5 134.7 169.2 175.9
North East 82.0 89.7 106.3 121.8 115.9
North West 89.2 96.4 110.1 128.8 126.3
Yorkshire and The Humber 87.6 94.9 106.5 121.5 116.6
East Midlands 91.2 96.8 110.8 128.6 124.7
West Midlands 91.1 96.3 110.9 127.8 124.7
Wales 89.5 92.5 108.9 123.5 121.5
East of England 100.2 103.6 123.2 147.7 145.8
Outer London 101.1 102.4 122.1 147.5 144.9
Inner London 95.8 99.0 115.2 138.4 136.8
South East 99.2 101.3 119.3 143.6 142.8
South West 96.5 100.7 119.4 140.0 138.0
Grand Total 92.4 97.3 112.6 132.2 130.2

The gap is widening between the time to exchange for £1m plus properties, with it now taking 15.50% longer than properties priced less than £200,000. Over the last 12 months, the price bands that have seen a reduction in the time to exchange are up to £200,000 (4.05%) and £200,000 to £350,000 (2.25%).

Time to Exchange by Price Band

Sum of Average Time to Exchange 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
>=0 – <200000 88.2 94.1 109.3 125.7 120.6
>=200000 – <350000 93.9 98.7 114.1 133.0 130.0
>=350000 – <1000000 97.4 99.9 114.7 137.5 138.5
>=1000000 94.2 94.6 111.4 133.5 139.3

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