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What are title deeds?

What are title deeds?

Title deeds are important legal documents that serve as proof of ownership for land and property. They provide a comprehensive record of the chain of ownership, enabling individuals to trace back the history of the property. These deeds can include various types of documents such as conveyances, contracts for sale, wills, and mortgages.

Conveyances are one type of title deed that highlights the transfer of ownership from one party to another. These documents typically contain detailed information about the property being transferred, including its location and boundaries. Contracts for sale, on the other hand, outline the terms and conditions agreed upon between the buyer and seller when a property is being purchased. They lay out crucial details such as the purchase price, payment method, and any applicable conditions.

Where can I find my title deeds?

If you need to find your title deeds, you can access digital copies through HM Land Registry. The Land Registry holds important documents, such as the Title Register and Title Plan, which make up the title deeds. The Title Register contains ownership information and details on covenants, charges, and the title number. This document is crucial for understanding the legal status of the property.

If the property in question has not been sold or refinanced since the 1990s, it is likely that the original deeds have not yet been digitised.

Do I need the original copy of my title deeds?

Having the original copy of your title deeds is not a legal requirement. Since 1990, HM Land Registry has been responsible for keeping a digital copy of every registered property's title deeds. This digital version is now commonly used during property transactions and is considered the definitive record for property and land ownership in England and Wales.

If you are interested in obtaining the original copy of your property's title deeds, they may be held by various parties. For homeowners with no mortgage, they are entitled to own the original copies. However, it is important to note that having the original copy does not provide any additional legal rights or benefits. The digital copy held by HM Land Registry holds equal legal weight and is widely accepted in property transactions.

How do I make changes to the title deeds?

Making changes to title deeds can be necessary for a variety of reasons, such as changing names after a divorce or marriage. To make these changes, it is important to refer to the specific piece of title deed documentation related to the property. The GOV.UK website provides detailed information on how to make these changes, including the necessary forms and fees involved.

In order to make changes to the title deeds, individuals will typically need to provide proof of identity and have the application form signed by a solicitor. It's worth noting that for more complex changes, it may be advisable to use a solicitor for the entire process. They can provide guidance and ensure that all necessary steps are taken correctly.

Can you sell property without title deeds?

When selling a property without title deeds, it is important to understand that the process can be much more complicated and time-consuming. Without title deeds, it becomes challenging to prove ownership and provide essential information about the property's history. However, obtaining a possessory title deed, also known as Qualified Title, can help move forward with the sale.

A possessory title deed is granted when the original title deeds are lost or damaged beyond recognition. This often happens in unfortunate events such as fires or floods. While possessing a Qualified Title is not ideal, it provides some level of documentation that establishes ownership. Alternatively, sellers may also consider providing a statutory declaration to the buyer and their lender as another option. However, attempting to sell without holding an Absolute Title can lead to a lengthy and complex process, impacting both the timeline and potential price of the property.

Can you change the names on your house deed?

If you find yourself in a situation where you need to change the names on your house deed, it is important to understand that this process, known as a Transfer of Ownership, should ideally be handled by a qualified solicitor. This typically occurs when there is a divorce or separation, and one party wants to remove their name from the property deeds while the other remains as the sole owner. Hiring a solicitor ensures that all legal requirements are met and helps protect your interests during this complex process.

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