Through my work with Proptech Ireland and with global technology innovators over the past few years, I have spoken at length about the potential to speed up the conveyancing process in Ireland.
The end of conveyancing delays
In an article in the Irish Times earlier this week, it was confirmed that conveyancing in the Republic of Ireland will move to a pre-contract investigation of title system. This is similar to the process used for online auctions and the New Homes market; it is a welcome development in the Irish property marketplace.
How this will work
Essentially, contracts for sale and all supporting title documentation will be prepared in advance of a property coming to the market, similar to the BER certificate. As already happens when properties are being purchased via auction, now all private treaty purchases will have the title checked/investigated (traditional ‘Requisitions on Title’) at pre-contract stage.
What this means
The greatest impact that this change will likely have is to reduce (eliminate?) frustrating delays. In fact, only this week I learned of a 12-month delay with the conveyance of a family home in Wicklow in recent years – this is entirely unreasonable.
It is important to point out that both purchasers and sellers will need to engage (different!) solicitors to deal with the conveyance if a mortgage is involved – it is strongly recommended either way. Accepting the need for legal advice, the conveyancing process ought to become more automated, faster and therefore, lower cost… We’ll wait and see if this happens.
It is surprising that no mention has been made of efforts to introduce or even facilitate the use of Blockchain technologies when registering title.
[A more cynical person might point out that this move by an organisation – that had a pretty ineffective e-conveyancing committee for two decades – is more protectionist than innovative.]