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Why Are You Not Named On Your Lease?

Unless you buy your apartment, flat or maisonette direct from the developer as a new build, you will not be named on the Lease.

The original parties, when the Lease is first granted, are shown on the Lease and remain on there throughout. The Lease document itself is not updated each time the property is sold. It remains as drafted and is noted at the Government run Land Registry. The property will appear on this register with its individual title number. The register entries for each property are called office copies of the registered title. This is what will be updated when ownership changes hands. Although bear in mind that there is a huge backlog at Land Registry and nothing is done quickly.

The Lease will always be a vital Deed as it sets out the terms agreed by the property owner and the landlord. The landlord is the person who granted the Lease or currently owns the freehold. The landlord always has a superior title and the Lease is granted out of the same. If a dispute ever arises you should refer to the Lease in the first instance. The Lease will clarify who must do what.

A Note On Unregistered Land

Unregistered properties are not common but they do occur. They are usually owned by an elderly person who has not moved for 40 odd years. Unregistered land will be more complex to deal with and additional legal fees are likely to be involved. You will also be charged a higher land registration fee by the Registry due to the additional work.

How Is The Lease Transferred To Me

Under Land Registry rules a Transfer Deed, also referred to as a TR1, is used to change the name of the property owner. HM Land Registry is then updated and the owner or registered proprietor is changed*. However, any original Deeds, Documents and Leases will remain as drafted. This is the case when you buy any property whether it is freehold or leasehold. The terms of the historic Deeds remain relevant and noted at Land Registry.

*There are huge delays with applications to update the property register at the Registry. This has been the case for many years now. The more complex the registration the longer it takes. They are a Government body after all.

What Are Office Copies

Conveyancers call the Land Registry entries office copies of the register. They are a summary of the historic title deeds and record current owner, price last paid and any mortgages or charges on the property. They may also refer to Rights Granted, benefiting the property owner, Rights Reserved, benefiting neighbouring properties, and Restrictive Covenants or conditions which the property owner must not breach.

Essentially the office copies are the deeds. You no longer receive a bundle of historic paper deeds. The office copies summarise these Deeds. Office copies are available online for about £6. These are public documents and anyone may order copies.

Other Related Blog Articles

Please see my other leasehold articles on the blog which discuss common issues such as escalating ground rent, short lease terms, cladding & fire risk and dealing with service charge arrears and retentions. These are matters which may render the property unmortgeable. There are ways around this however and you should speak to your Conveyancer for further assistance.

My Leasehold Terms Explained article may also be of interest as Leasehold documentation tends to use complex and confusing terminology. It is the most complex area of title to deal with. Although Shared Ownership rivals leasehold for the title.

Leasehold apartments



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