Good news from the Land Registry
As property lawyers we deal with the Land Registry on a daily basis. It is not often you can look back on a year and say they have done us proud. However changes that have been made have made the processes of registration cheaper and quicker.
The first change is a reduction in the fees paid for registration. On top of that a new system has been introduced which lets registrations take place on-line. If this system is used there is a further 50% reduction in fees.
The new system is called E-DRS. In the past if we wanted to the title of a new owner to a property we had to send the deeds by post to the Land Registry. We can now do this on-line through a portal. The drawback is that the onus is now on the applicant to ensure the accuracy. This means a greater burden of responsibility for the lawyers.
Another change is the introduction of “map search”. We can search for an address on a map on line. This enables us to check instantly whether land is registered. If it is we can get the title number immediately. In the past this process would have taken 3 working days.
All these changes are part of a drive to speed up and simplify the conveyancing process. The end goal is for the entire system to be paper free. The next step proposed is for local land charges to be recorded by the Land Registry, which should speed up the local search process. However, no matter how far the process is streamlined we will still be left with the delays caused by chains of transactions.