OPDA contributes to new Digital Property Market Steering Group roadmap

Members of the Open Property Data Association (OPDA) have contributed to the Digital Property Market Steering Group’s (DPMSG) roadmap to drive change in the land and property market.

The roadmap outlines the group’s public commitment to what can, at minimum, be expected in its first year.

Formed last year, the group represents all parts of the sector and identifies the greatest potential areas for accelerated digital adoption.

The roadmap was created to reflect the group’s vision and commitment to delivering substantive and sustainable change.

Through collaboration and a focus on emerging digital technologies, the roadmap builds on existing progress across the home buying and selling system to create a better experience and result for the customer.

Maria Harris, chair of the OPDA, is co-chairing the Digital Property Market Steering Group’s data stream working group, alongside Beth Rudolf, who is also co-chair of the Home Buying Selling Group and director of delivery for Conveyancing Association.

The Digital Property Market Steering Group held its launch event on 12th September 2023 and saw input and feedback into the Group’s objectives from more than 270 property sector and government guests, including the OPDA.

This supported the development of the DPMSG’s first work programme and prioritisation, the roadmap for which has now been published.

Key aspects of the roadmap included developing an action list to remove paper-based processes and see rapid adoption of digital ID and secure e-signatures, a research and development roadmap, and an industry-wide digital charter detailing roles and responsibilities across the sector to generate up front information.

The DPMSG will publish an annual report in 2024 to coincide with the anniversary of the 2023 launch event, which will outline progress, the digital health of the property ecosystem, and its future direction.

Maria Harris (pictured), chair of the OPDA, said: “Our membership and contribution to the DPMSG is recognition for our member firms who are the first cross industry group to successfully create and implement an open data schema for digital property packs.

“We believe passionately that the key to improving the homebuying process requires open standards, digitisation, and collaboration across all government and industry parties, making the role of DPMSG vital to drive the changes we need.”

Mike Harlow, deputy chief executive and director of customer and strategy at HM Land Registry, said: “The roadmap sets out the Group’s strategic objectives and highlights the steps needed to achieve our goals.

“We will be actively monitoring and reflecting on our progress over the next 12 months, so it is important to note that this is a working document that will be ever-evolving, helping us to align ourselves towards common goals, fostering better collaboration and better understanding. 

“Change is hard but by working together, and being clear about the action that is needed, we believe that we will achieve a vision where everyone involved in buying, leasing and selling land and property experiences a secure and modern market that is transparent, customer-friendly and business-friendly at all stages”.