The Land Registry has recorded its first digital mortgage as part of its plans to speed up the conveyancing process. Acceptance of digital signatures is currently only available on remortgages.

It came from Coventry Building Society and Enact Conveyancing, who lodged a remortgage on a house in Rotherhithe, London.

The registration of the deed follows months of collaboration and testing with Coventry BS and Enact, and uses the GOV.UK Verify service to enable borrowers to securely verify their identity based on official documents such as their passport before digitally signing their mortgage deed online.

Graham Farrant, chief executive of the Land Registry, said: “By working with partners in the industry, we have secured a simpler and faster service for the benefit of home owners.

“We are looking forward to rolling this out nationally and will be working with more conveyancers and lenders to do so.”

Peter Frost, chief operating officer at Coventry BS, said: “Initial feedback has been very positive, with customers finding the process simple, quick and secure. Although this initiative has started with remortgages, we’re excited about the potential for it to be extended to purchases in the future.”

It means that first-time buyers and home movers will continue to have to use pen and paper for at least the time being – and have witnesses.