Email hack results in $250K settlement funds being stolen during electronic property settlement

According to Fairfax Media reporting: MasterChef finalist Dani Venn woke to a housing nightmare on Monday when it was confirmed $250,000 from the settlement of her semi-rural property on the outskirts of Melbourne was stolen after her conveyancer’s account was hacked. Unbeknown to Ms Venn and her conveyancer, Sargeants Knox Conveyancing, the proceeds of the sale were transferred to a fraudster’s bank account after hackers accessed the conveyancer’s electronic property transfer account and added themselves as another user. … The hackers broke into the conveyancing firms’ email accounts, accessed their mail from PEXA and set up new user accounts. They then intercepted emails […]

Over 100,000 PEXA Exchange transactions completed in May 2018

Digital property transactions are experiencing exponential growth as Property Exchange Australia (PEXA) announced that last month over 100,000 transactions had been completed on the platform, a 25% jump from the month prior. In April the company also announced that over 1 million transactions were settled digitally on the PEXA platform. Digital transactions have grown from strength to strength with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 202% (FY2014 to May2018). Much of this growth has occurred over the past year, with PEXA’s May 2018 transfer transactions more than nine times higher than for the same period the year prior, a […]

PEXA surpasses one million digital property transactions

Property Exchange Australia (PEXA), the electronic property exchange platform, has now completed more than one million property transactions[1], with over half of those transactions occurring in the last 10 months. PEXA, formed to fulfil a Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) initiative, aims to deliver a national e-Conveyancing solution to the Australian property industry. The company has been operating since 2010. Australia’s property market is valued at approximately $7.5 trillion[2] and in 2017 it was reported that an average of 590,000[3] dwellings changed ownership each year. In the existing paper-based process, approximately one in four property settlements are delayed, risking financial […]

Overseas expansion opportunities could underpin PEXA’s sale price

Does PEXA have plans to go global? Marcus Price, CEO of PEXA says that his organisation is in active conversations with a number of countries.  PEXA’s sale or IPO was expected to benefit from an effective monopoly position. Then, in February 2018 to the surprise of many, InfoTrack confirmed that it intended partnering with ASX to provide an electronic property settlement platform. Subject to regulatory approval from ARNECC, the platform is expected to be operational this year. Formidable competition to PEXA now hangs over its sale. Overseas expansion may alleviate such a setback.  The PEXA platform began to be built in 2011. Since day-one it […]

ASX and InfoTrack to Compete with PEXA

InfoTrack has confirmed that it intends partnering with ASX to provide an electronic property settlement platform. Subject to regulatory approval from ARNECC, the platform is expected to be operational this year.  Mr Dominic Stevens, CEO of ASX said that ASX is investigating how it can leverage its existing infrastructure for the platform.  Legal Practice Intelligence understands that the co-operation between ASX and InfoTrack is likely to be in the form of a jointly owned private entity. The name of the new platform has not yet been announced.  Also not known is whether there will be any integration between the new platform and PEXA. […]

A second e-settlements platform will end the PEXA “monopoly”

The Street Talk section in the AFR (12/1/18) claims: “Sources said InfoTrack had applied to the industry regulator to join PEXA as an approved Electronic Lodgement Network Operator, which would make it Australia’s second such approved operator, and had gone so far as to notify PEXA of its plans.” The combination of mandated e-settlements and a single operator had the makings of a monopoly marketplace. A second operator will instantly end any such monopoly.  Legal Practice Intelligence has contacted InfoTrack for a response to the AFR article. Check back for further updates. We will be following developments closely.

WA Conveyancers say it is time to replace the e-conveyancing regulator

Mandatory electronic settlement is scheduled to come into force in Western Australia on 1 May 2018 – for all eligible documents. There is still a possibility that the WA parliament will stop the mandating – as is the recommendation from The Institute of Conveyancers Western Australia (AICWA). At the same time that this is taking place, the WA government has begun the investigation of privatising its land registry known as Landgate. The regulator of the electronic settlement system is a body known as ARNECC which is a body comprised of the individual state and territory land registrars.  However, some land registries and state governments […]

A new association based in Western Australia is a strong advocate for compulsory electronic settlements

The E-Conveyancing Association of Western Australia (ECAWA) is headed by Ebony Bishop who is President and Jack Boyle, Vice President. They are both conveyancers / settlement agents in WA. The view of ECAWA is that “Western Australian home buyers and sellers stand to benefit from a more transparent, secure and efficient home settlement process through the introduction of compulsory electronic settlements.” ECAWA further states: “The view that electronic property transactions shouldn’t be mandated while only one provider exists is flawed. In giving the market certainty around the way property transactions are required to be treated in future, Government is creating the exact […]

Praise and Concern About PEXA

The vast majority of the conveyancing industry would likely hold the view that the digital era is unstoppable and that it has huge benefits. However, there is also an awareness that there are risks along the way and that with any major structural change there will be winners and losers. In the video below we hear about the benefits. Directly below the video, The Australian Institute of Conveyancers Western Australia outline some recent concerns and risks.        Below – Official statement from AICWA: Consumers to wear costs of mandated e-conveyancing Regulation gazetted by the Minister for Transport, Planning and Lands Ms Rita […]