Agents need land revenue services to be accessible and affordable

HM Land Revenue (HMLR) provides vital information for agents listing properties to let and sell and completing the sales process. Quick, cost-effective access to these services is more important than ever as the industry adjusts to the latest material information guidance.

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Propertymark conducted a focus group session with our Regional Executives, who represent both sales and lettings agents, to inform our response to the consultation. Many stated that they and their colleagues use HMLR’s services for every property sale, and we are keen to ensure that both the services and charging model are fair and practical for our members.  

A tool that is more vital than ever

Following the introduction of material information parts B and C, property agents need to use HMLR services more often to check more complex information that sellers provide.

Propertymark encourages agents to verify property details with HMLR as best practice, as many of our members have reported that information provided by landlords or homeowners can be inaccurate or incomplete.

Accessibility will encourage use

The ability to reliably verify property information is a key part of improving transactions and reducing fall-throughs, therefore HMLR’s charging structure should be kept reasonable and simple to encourage both consumers and agents to use the service as a matter of routine.

Jigsaw pieces being put together
30 Nov 2023
Full Material Information guidance published

Cost-effective services

Paying for each property search, title register, and title plan is expensive for many agents, and they are not always able to recoup this cost through their fees, which can discourage them from carrying out checks on information provided by a seller.

This is vitally important to resolve as it can create detriment for buyers as well as leave agents open to liability if details, such as the length of a lease, are not accurate.

Either a subscription model or the ability to pay in advance for some checks at a lower cost would make the services more appealing to agents, as this could be more easily factored into their costs.

Adopt best practices from the market

The main appeal of other organisations that provide similar functions is that they have an expanded range of data and services designed to improve the speed and reduce the chance of fall-throughs within the home buying and selling process.

The combination of additional services and the option to pay by subscription encourages agents to use the services and has led to some agents choosing these providers over HMLR.

Download the full consultation response