Purchase Ground rent, but Freeholder lost the Deeds?

by Readers Question

8:50 AM, 11th September 2018
About 2 months ago

Purchase Ground rent, but Freeholder lost the Deeds?

Make Text Bigger
Purchase Ground rent, but Freeholder lost the Deeds?

I have been living in my property for over three years and would like to purchase the freehold.

The property the company who own the freehold have agreed to sell this onto me and have sent a letter to me with all the costs to purchase, but know they are saying they can’t find the title deeds to the property and can’t proceed.

Can someone advise me of the process for me to purchase the freehold under these circumstances it has been going on for over two years

Many thanks
Chris



Comments

Neil Patterson

8:53 AM, 11th September 2018
About 2 months ago

Hi Chris,

I am assuming these are old school bundle of deeds not electronically registered?

This does happen but you need specialist property solicitors to draw up indemnities and new paperwork, which will have a cost.

Puzzler

10:06 AM, 11th September 2018
About 2 months ago

May be check with the Land Registry? If there is a lease there should also be some form of registration of the freehold title.

Sounds like they may be stalling....

Alison King

10:56 AM, 11th September 2018
About 2 months ago

I suspect this is more common than we think especially with the 999 year Victorian terrace type property with peppercorn rent. There was a spate of these leases coming up for auction in job lots a few years ago and lease companies were buying them up in the hope they could make a killing only to find that they weren't worth the paper they were written on. I get occasional offers for me to purchase my leases for anything from £100 to £900 usually from lease companies based in the South West and they always go quiet when I ask to see the lease. I'm just waiting for them to come clean and admit they failed to do due diligence. I think it's possible to insure against the lease turning up unexpectedly. One of my properties had such a policy when I bought it and it was something like a £50 one off payment.

tarune_patel@yahoo.co.uk

13:02 PM, 11th September 2018
About 2 months ago

Is property mortgaged? Is it a house for a flat? The Mortgagee hold the deeds and at the end of term the mortgagee arranges the freehold transfer at The Land Registry. Third party outside the scope of the mortgage is not allowed the freehold. The terms and conditions and the lease explains it all.

Puzzler

12:28 PM, 12th September 2018
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by at 11/09/2018 - 13:02
It's all held electronically nowadays and the LR have copies. The freehold ownership can change as any lenders will be included in the conveyancing where appropriate.

Ian Narbeth

12:58 PM, 12th September 2018
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Puzzler at 12/09/2018 - 12:28
If the "deeds" have been lost it means the property is not registered. Chris should consult a solicitor. One solution may be to get defective title indemnity insurance to guard against the risk that the true owner is not the seller. You should also insist the seller transfers "with full title guarantee" so that you have recourse if it turns out that the seller was not the true owner.


Leave Comments

Please Log-In OR Become a member to reply to comments or subscribe to new comment notifications.

Forgotten your password?

OR

BECOME A MEMBER

Want to avoid empty properties over Christmas?

The Landlords Union

Become a Member, it's FREE

Our mission is to facilitate the sharing of best practice amongst UK landlords, tenants and letting agents

Learn More