The Q1 2019 edition of the Conveyancing Market Tracker from Search Acumen reports that the number of active conveyancing law firms in England and Wales has dropped below 4,000 for the first time. At 3,961 active conveyancing law firms, this number is down 9% on five years ago. The top 200 firms now control more than 39% of the market with the top 1,000 conveyancers controlling more than three quarters of the market.
Search Acumen comments that low-volume conveyancing law firms continue to be hit the hardest. The number of firms processing up to five transactions a month was down almost 14% compared with five years ago and the number of firms processing fewer than 50 transactions a month is down 10%.
Andy Sommerville, Search Acumen director, said: ‘As smaller firms that tend to operate on a more local scale are increasingly squeezed out of the market, we risk seeing a consequent fallout of their specialist knowledge. It is here that technology can play a crucial role. Continued efforts by the government to digitise property and land data – coupled with innovative and efficient ways to add to and maximise the growing pool of information – mean that conveyancers and lawyers can benefit from better insights at their fingertips.’
The latest case management software does much to control, automate, and drive efficiency into the conveyancing process, helping firms to thrive in an increasingly competitive market. Redbrick Solutions Case Management can save time by automating much of the process, from producing quotes, to completing ID checks, Land Registry submissions and ordering searches to producing completion statements. The online portal allows the conveyancer to upload documents for the client to complete and sign electronically, providing a better service for the client and a more efficient transaction for all concerned. Text and Email messages can be pre-programmed into your workflow so that they are sent automatically at key milestones, keeping your clients up to date, improving client satisfaction by demonstrating how pro-active and efficient you are and keeping your matters on track.