"The UK Conveyancing Market Briefing 2017" provides an overview of the UK conveyancing market which has witnessed a period of fluctuating trends in the last few years.
From 2009 onwards the residential conveyancing market has been improving slowly through to 2016 but then declined in the second half of 2016 and the first half of 2017.
In the first quarter of 2016 there was a spike in transaction volumes prior to the 31st March 2016 deadline for the Stamp Duty Land Tax changes imposed for additional properties. Since then and up to the middle of 2017 the market has been largely subdued and the number of house purchases for 2017 is generally expected to fall.
Between 2011 and 2016, the number of practising conveyancing firms in England and Wales fell by 26% from 7,677 to only 5,689.
The number of practising solicitors working in conveyancing in England and Wales has also decreased by over 3,000 between 2009 and the start of 2017.
The author is forecasting growth in residential conveyancing market value of less than 2% at current prices in 2017. A majority of conveyancers surveyed for the report are anticipating some volume growth in the next 12 months but market uncertainties are likely to limit this volume growth.