Lee Bailie, S+G’s General Manager for Conveyancing, foreshadows a future that could see property bought online using a smart phone
Long before it was acquired by Slater + Gordon, Conveyancing Works began life in 2000 like other start-ups with the firm’s founder ‘knocking on many doors’ to secure early support. According to Lee Bailie, S+G’s General Manager for Conveyancing, the 2008 GFC pushed the firm to rapidly develop technologies to modernise and meet property buyers’ and sellers’ needs. In just years he expects that a wave of change will have rolled through the industry. A new property-buying generation could even look to transact via smartphones. But the burning question for practitioners will ultimately be ‘how can we do this better’?
Conveyancing’s fundamentals haven’t changed for decades
The starting point is to take a good, long hard look at our industry. Conveyancing’s fundamentals haven’t changed for decades – whereas client expectations have. In establishing Conveyancing Works our founder asked the question: ‘how can we build the business by being more empathetic to the everyday Australians who are buying or selling their family home – by far their largest asset’?
In 10 years’ time clients might manage some of the pre-work required for a transaction
The internet has created a level of awareness about issues and facilitated easy access to information that people didn’t have twenty years ago. In 10 years’ time some clients might manage some of the pre-work required for a transaction. Equally, others will want a full professional service provided wholly by the practitioner. Either way, clients will have a better understanding of and more control over what they’re paying for.
PEXA will make the whole end to end process of buying a property more transparent
We are committed to making our processes more transparent and easy to use for our clients. While this is changing, I’d still say that many people only realise after they’ve engaged a real estate agent that they will need to engage and pay for the services of a lawyer or conveyancer. PEXA will make this top of mind as it makes the whole end to end process of buying a property more transparent.
Many people want to know up front that there’s a fixed cost – that they’re paying a fair and reasonable price. PEXA eliminates settlement costs associated with traditional conveyancing including bank cheques and costly postage fees.
Two people still stand in a settlement room exchanging title deeds, cheques, etc. for the majority of settlements in Australia. And while that may be the process, we are working with an increasingly tech-savvy client group and we need to respond to their needs. Slater and Gordon’s Conveyancing Works is currently using a text message service for clients on the go who want to know that they’ve received the contract and settlement has occurred – and they love the service.
People have already been buying cars online for the past few years and for many that’s the next biggest purchase after buying property.
The new generation buying property will expect to settle online
Then there’s coordination and communication between stakeholders. All the relevant information is shared online with the bank, lawyer or conveyancer and potentially the real estate agent. All parties can see the transaction. Fast forward to 2025 and I expect this will become standard. PEXA is facilitating this type of communication. It gives all the parties greater peace of mind. And at the end of all this is the client knowing the process has been quicker and clearer to all those involved.
There’s change coming
Slater and Gordon’s Conveyancing Works is always looking to the future and where our clients want us to be in the future. Innovation is key and we are committed to making it a priority.
Almost 2,000 lawyers and conveyancers have already completed their PEXA registration. Have you joined yet? Register or call 1300 084 515