2023 Logbook Pilot Challenges Assumptions

2023 Logbook Pilot Challenges Assumptions

IN THIS ARTICLE

During the summer of 2023, conveyancing solicitors in a working group questioned the belief that introducing a property logbook would streamline the conveyancing aspect of purchasing a home. In response, the Home Buying & Selling Group’s (HBSG) Logbook Working Group decided to initiate a new pilot to address the concerns raised by lawyers and conveyancers about the implementation and utility of a logbook.

A primary concern was clarifying the definition of a logbook and establishing the essential information it should contain before a property is put on the market. The group unanimously agreed that all logbooks should consistently include the owner’s details as stated in the Title, an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), a Title Plan, the Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN), and verified owner identity, aligning with forthcoming government digital identity legislation. This standard was seen as a solid foundation.

Additionally, the group concluded that logbooks should also encompass details about planning permissions, building regulations, neighbour agreements, and warranties. They believed their widespread adoption throughout the industry is critical for logbooks to be genuinely practical. They also felt that the government should take a more proactive role in fostering the environment needed to enhance and expand the use of logbooks. This would include improving the accessibility of government-held data to aid the property market.

Legal professionals voiced concerns over the digital receipt of data and its origins. On average, conveyancers wait for information from roughly 19 sources, including official records. Government agencies must prioritize making their data readily available to the legal field to improve the speed of the conveyancing process. This active approach could address data origins and liability concerns, reduce conveyancers’ administrative workload, and provide earlier access to necessary property information.

Through the HBSG, the industry has started to adopt common data standards and methods to depict data reliability. Progress continues in digitising property data sources, and the Open Property Data Association (OPDA), led by Maria Harris, is tackling data origin issues by developing a Property Data Trust Framework (PDTF).

The Home Buying & Selling Group has compiled a report summarising these discussions and is available upon request. Stuart Young, who spearheaded this review for the HBSG Logbook Working Group, expressed enthusiasm about the upcoming pilot tests with the participating law firms. He also mentioned plans for further collaboration with surveyors and real estate agents to gather their insights.

 

 

Author

2023 Logbook Pilot Challenges Assumptions 1

Gill Laing is a qualified Legal Researcher & Analyst with niche specialisms in Law, Tax, Human Resources, Immigration & Employment Law.

Gill is a Multiple Business Owner and the Managing Director of Prof Services - a Marketing Agency for the Professional Services Sector.

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