Digitisation of the Property Transaction Ecosystem

March 21, 2017

In 2008 the government launched their National Seamless Economy initiative which aimed to improve production and efficiencies to achieve a strong, consistentapproach in business - including for the property market. Digitisation was a key tool employed to achieve this.

Since then we've seen a decided shift in the way property is transacted as the industry joins the growing global movement towards digitisation.

This effort to streamline the property transaction has had varying degrees of success due to what we've identified as three key challenges:

  • Behavioral Challenge: The 'leap of faith' and change management required to transition to new systems and new ways of working in a digital environment. 
  • Four Party Challenge: E-settlement can only work if all parties are on board. Generating true value to property transactions through industry-wide change requires the bulk of the industry accept digitisation and adopt new technology.
  • Real World Networks: The property transaction is a very emotional and humanistic process - particularly for the buyer and seller. Digital advancement must support human connections, not replace them.

From electronic Verification of Identity (VOI) through to digital signatures, electronic contracts and electronic settlements, these attempts at digitisation have impacted only the final settlement stage of the process. If all the groundwork has been done properly, this should be the simplest part of the property transaction yet it is the groundwork though, undertaken by conveyancing professionals juggling red tape and sourcing information from multiple parties with client hand-holding that carries the most margin for error.

Home buyers and sellers are the most important participants in the transaction. SAI Global believes that if we simplify the end-to-end transaction through smart utilisation of new technologies to reduce administration time we can pave the way for conveyancing professionals to focus on what's really important; supporting their clients through an incredibly stressful process.

Four of SAI Global Property Experts share their views on how digitisation has impacted the industry to date, where it's at now and what needs to happen next.