How can the conveyancing sector make the most of lockdown?
The property market – and therefore the conveyancing sector as well – has been hit exceptionally hard by the coronavirus.
Effectively, due to the effects of the Covid-19 crisis and the lockdown, the housing market has completely ground to a halt. This is a tough time for everyone involved in property – not just property but also those who work in the sector.
However, there are some areas of good news amongst the challenges. Firstly it is to say that there has been no slump in housing prices – nor the suggestion that things cannot return to normal when some of the restrictions. And additionally, the wholesale changes that have been forced upon the property industry have meant businesses have to embrace new, innovative ways of working.
The conveyancing can make the most of lockdown – but to do so businesses need to approach it as a problem to be overcome. Here we take a look at some of the things that conveyancing professionals can do to work through lockdown and beyond.
Following government advice closely
At the start of lockdown, government guidance was very clear that people should avoid moving home during this time. It was accepted that some people would need to move and that property businesses would need to continue to operate in order to cover the needs of many individuals, however, in general terms, it was recommended that buyers and sellers should put their transactions on hold if at all possible.
The government has, however, changed their advice in light of slight changes to the terms of lockdown. The official guidance now makes it clear that people who wish to move are free to do so, but that the property industry must recognise that there will need to be changes in the way that they operate.
The key thing to note here is that government advice is changing, and it is up to conveyancing professionals to follow this advice closely. Stay up to date with the latest changes and do everything you can to work within the rules.
Get used to new ways of working
Crucially, then, it is up to conveyancing professionals to get used to new ways of working so that their role can continue to be carried out safely. Many conveyancing specialists are having to forego the office environment and embrace home working – as is the case for professionals across many different sectors.
It has to be accepted that no-one is really sure how long the Covid-19 pandemic will continue to affect normal living conditions. So conveyancers must find new ways to continue working differently for the foreseeable future.
Take lessons from other property professionals
There can be no doubt that one of the most important ways for conveyancing professionals to make the most of the lockdown and the situation that has been inherited, is to follow lessons from the property industry as a whole. In order to meet with the new demands of working within a different environment, it is up to conveyancers to find new ways to work closely with surveyors, estate agents, and lenders.
Qualified building surveyor Alan Rance says:
“We have found that it has been possible to work through lockdown. It is important to adapt to the market and offer customers what they are looking for, whilst at the same time following official guidelines around social distancing and making health and safety a priority.”
Technology has been a huge factor in allowing conveyancers to continue to work as normal. Face-to-face meetings have been replaced with video calls. Efficient and effective home working has been facilitated through VPNs and remote desktop applications. And if your conveyancing business is not getting on board with these changes, you risk being left behind.
Conveyancing has typically been reliant on office-based work, but increasingly professionals in the sector are finding ways to work remotely with the help of technology.
Ultimately, as we have discussed above, no-one truly understands the timescales of the Covid-19 pandemic. As such, it is best to consider everything in the worst-case scenario and prepare for a new way of working indefinitely. At the same time, as the world gets to grip with the virus, businesses may find that they are able to return to relative normality very swiftly.
Conveyancers, then, must be flexible and ready to embrace change in order to operate most effectively through this crisis and beyond.
Kindly shared by Annie Button