The Land Registry’s digital service “Sign your mortgage deed” was launched a year ago and is now being offered by major high street lenders.

The service enables people to sign and submit their mortgage deed online (which can be done on a phone, tablet or computer) without the need to print out the deed, sign it in the presence of a third party witness and return it by post. 

At first glance this seems less secure than a paper copy signed in the presence of an independent witness. However, the deed is digitally signed and, in place of a witness, uses gov.uk.verify to confirm the mortgagor’s identity, which provides an additional level of security over signing a paper deed. The digital mortgage deed is then held on the Land Registry’s IT database, making it more secure than a paper copy which could be lost or tampered with.

The service is currently only available for re-mortgages. It will not be extended to apply to all mortgages until further testing has been carried out. The banks that have signed up to the service include the following:

HSBC

Nationwide

RBS

Natwest

Skipton Building Society

West Bromwich Building Society

First Direct

Clydesdale Yorkshire Banking Group

Atom Bank

Coventry Building Society

Metro Bank

Principality Building Society

Platform (a trading name of the Co-operative Bank


Lorraine Rose

10 April 2019