Land Registry signals the start of its digital transformation

HM Land Registry has released its Annual Report and Accounts, setting out its priorities for an ambitious digital transformation with an open approach to data.

This is the first annual report and accounts HM Land Registry has published since it was announced by the government that it shall remain in the public sector and focus on becoming a digital and data-driven business.

HM Land Registry aims to begin the comprehensive registration of land in England and Wales. The initial focus will be on prioritising public sector land in order to provide an early indication of the scale of potential sites for house building and associated infrastructure needs.

Alongside the improved registration of land, the transformation will also involve working with the private sector to research and test new digital registers, potentially exploring blockchain, a plan HM Land Registry is calling ‘Digital Street’.

By changing how it works internally and moving to become a more digitally data-driven organisation, HM Land Registry will aim to meet the changing needs of its customers, testing new ideas with them that could make conveyancing simpler, faster and cheaper.

Responding to a government commitment to drive innovation in the digital economy, HM Land Registry will open up more of its datasets externally and across government to support infrastructure development, financial security, tax collection, law enforcement and national security.

 

Utilising Verify

The report also outlined plans to take electronic conveyancing to the next stage via digital registration of mortgages against title deeds, which will be publicly tested this year. This digital mortgage service has been tested behind closed doors for over a year and, once finalised, will allow borrowers to sign deeds electronically using the GOV.UK.Verify online authentication process.

Graham Farrant, Chief Executive and Chief Land Registrar, said: “To our many stakeholders, I would ask you to join, support and partner with us as we explore how through digital technology we can work together to make conveyancing quicker, cheaper and simpler for everyone.

“Our transformation will help support the UK in developing a vibrant and innovative digital economy. Our plans not only involve the digitisation of our existing services but we will explore how, through new digital technology, we can help to potentially release even more value from the Land Register.”

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