HM Land Registry’s new digital service ‘Sign your mortgage deed’ is now building momentum as the 1,000th digital mortgage deed was registered last week.
Coventry Building Society, who registered the very first digital mortgage, are leading the way with 37% of all digital mortgages registered, followed by closely by HSBC at 25% who signed nearly 200 digital mortgages in September alone.
In terms of conveyancers more than half of digital mortgages were delivered via Enact making them the leading conveyancer using the new service.
The service was launched by HM Land Registry to reduce paperwork and delays when applying for a remortgage.
Some customers have been able to complete the remortgage process in 3 days, 18 days less than average for a paper transaction.
Peter Frost, Chief Operating Officer at Coventry Building Society, said:
We’re delighted that this industry leading initiative to speed up property transactions has reached such a fantastic milestone. Feedback from remortgagors has been very positive, with customers finding the process simple, quick and secure. We’re proud to have worked with HM Land Registry and Enact Conveyancing on this initiative and are excited about the potential for it to be extended to purchases in the future.
As well as speeding up the remortgaging process, the way the service has been designed makes it more convenient for home owners. The only information needed is an email address, a mobile phone number and the borrower’s date of birth.
Because the whole process is completed online, it can be done at any time of the day and anywhere with an internet connection, meaning the service isn’t delayed by people waiting until they get home, needing to buy stamps, or making the last post.
The service is currently available for people remortgaging their houses; with HM Land Registry planning on expanding the service to all home owners in the future.
The following lenders are all now able to use the digital mortgage service:
- Atom Bank
- Clydesdale Yorkshire Banking Group
- Coventry Building Society
- Metro Bank
- Molo Finance
- Nationwide and The Mortgage Works
- Platform (a trading name of the Co-operative Bank)
- Principality Building Society
- RBS and NatWest
- Skipton Building Society
- West Bromwich Building Society
The following conveyancers are using the service:
- Hugh James
- O’Neill Patient
Customers with the mortgage lenders listed above should talk to their customer support team about using the free and fast new service.
HM Land Registry is working with other mortgage lenders and conveyancers to help them get ready to use the new service. Mortgage lenders and conveyancers who are interested in using the service should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The service has been shaped with the extensive support and feedback from Coventry Building Society and Enact Conveyancing during the initial development phase. Their contributions have been crucial to ensuring the service’s success.
Using the ‘Sign your mortgage deed’ service will mean the borrower will no longer need to apply pen to paper and will instead digitally sign their deed online.
Borrowers will save time as they won’t have to get their signatures witnessed or risk their documents being lost in the post. They will be able to log in and sign their deed at any time, meaning their application is more likely to move along more quickly.
The first digital mortgage was registered on 5 April 2018 on a house in Rotherhithe, London.
The service is currently available for people applying for a remortgage on their house, with no immediate plans to expand to all mortgages, until further testing is complete.
How the service works
- Lender creates a digital mortgage deed template with HMLR
- Conveyancer uses the template to create the deed and sends link to borrower
- To sign their deed, the borrower uses GOV.UK Verify to confirm their identity. This provides an additional level of identity assurance that does not exist when signing a paper deed. The digital deed is also more secure than a paper deed as it is always held on HM Land Registry’s IT infrastructure so cannot be lost or tampered with.
- After verifying their ID they are logged into the HMLR service and can check the mortgage deed
- Once happy they request a code to ‘sign’ their deed.
- The code is automatically sent to the mobile phone number they give to their conveyancers
- Once they input the code, the mortgage deed has been signed.
HM Land Registry Digital Transformation
The ‘Sign Your Mortgage Deed’ service is just one of many innovations from HM Land Registry which the organisation is hoping to introduce to make the buying, renting, selling, financing, building and managing property easier.
The recently launched Local Land Charges Register brings together data from local authorities across England in a central database. The digital register provides instant results in a standard, easy to read format and provides 24/7 access. This removes the need for manual searches in local authority offices and weeks of potential delays for each property transaction. The data from seven local authorities has been successfully transferred so far, Warwick District Council, City of London Corporation, Blackpool Council, Liverpool City Council, the Council of the Isles of Scilly, Norwich City Council and Lambeth Council
Homebuyers can use the ‘Find Property Information’ service to quickly find information about properties they are interested in at the start of the transaction, rather than waiting until an offer has been accepted.
Running in parallel to all new service development is ‘Digital Street’; a research and development project designed to drive innovation with the aim of making buying and selling property simpler, quicker and cheaper. Now in its third year, the project is continuing to explore emerging technology in the property market.
The project engages key stakeholders from across the industry, including PropTech specialists, data experts, conveyancers, property developers, mortgage lenders and others. Over the coming years HM Land Registry will be exploring how innovative uses of technology can make the land registration process simpler, faster and cheaper.
HM Land Registry
HM Land Registry safeguards land and property ownership in England and Wales. The Land Register contains more than 25 million titles showing evidence of ownership for more than 87% of the land mass of England and Wales.
HM Land Registry’s mission is to guarantee and protect property rights in England and Wales. HM Land Registry is a government department created in 1862. Its ambition is to become the world’s leading land registry for speed, simplicity and an open approach to data.
For further information about HM Land Registry visit gov.uk/land-registry.
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