DIY research – What can I find out myself about a Property?

It is always worth undertaking some research yourself before or just after you make an offer to purchase property, just prior to starting the conveyancing process.

Local Searches

You can inspect the surrounding area yourself looking out for things such as the proximity of :

  • rivers,
  • land fill sites,
  • open or green belt land
  • churches,
  • railway lines

These should all be investigated by your conveyancer since they may have an impact on the property and special searches may have to be undertaken.

Local Authority records

The Local Authority records are also available for inspection so you can obtain some information on boundaries, neighbouring properties, planned or ongoing road works and planning and building regulations consents.

The Local Authority records may also reveal that the property is a listed building or is situated in a conservation area in which case you will be limited in terms of any alterations you wish to make to the property.

Check Rights of Way over Public Footpath

Upon inspection you may notice a path or alleyway that is shared by the public or the adjoining property owner. If this is the  case, you should let your conveyancer know. Rights of way and ownership should be checked by your conveyancer.

E-Conveyancing

The Land Registry website, with its drive towards ‘E-conveyancing’ allows you to obtain a copy of the Title Register and Plan for a small fee. This will provide you with details of the owner of the property, any restrictive covenants (useful if you are considering building on the land) rights of way and boundaries.

Inform your Conveyancer

Once you have gathered together the information you have found out you should inform your conveyancer so as to ensure nothing is overlooked and all matters are thoroughly checked before you commit yourself to the purchase.