How do I register my title to protect land from neighbour’s claim?
Q: About 25 years ago, I inherited four terraced houses in Huddersfield which I rent out to private tenants.
To the rear of these houses is an area of land upon which my tenants park their cars.
The deeds to the houses are un-registered and I understand the title includes the land to the rear.
Recently, I received a call from one of my tenants to say a neighbour from another house in the street, not a tenant of one of my houses, has started to park a car on the land and intends to claim a right to do so.
I am concerned the title to the property and land is unregistered and the implications this may have as well as the rights that could be claimed by the intruding neighbour. A: The first thing to do to protect your land is to make a voluntary application for First Registration of title.
This entails completing a DL1 document list and a FR1 application form.
This can be done by a conveyancer/solicitor and the cost is not prohibitive when you consider the benefits.
You can make this application personally but if you do so, you will also need to complete ID identity forms.
The main benefits of having your deeds registered are :
Helps to protect your land against encroachment.
Enables you to fully identify the extent of your land and property and computerise the deeds.
Protects against fraud and fraudulent property transfer applications.
If you mortgage or sell your land. it will help to streamline the conveyancing process
Up to three contact addresses for you can be entered on to the property register and two can be email addresses.
Once registered. you will have Land Registry protection and as a landlord who does not live at the property you are at a greater level of risk against fraudulent transactions.
Further information can be obtained from Land Registry’s website – www. landregistry. gov.uk – or contacting the Land Registry on 0800 0283 404.
It may be of interest to you that the latest statistics show Land Registry paid just over £5m in compensation in 2008/9 for 62 fraud and forgery claims when dealing with four million applications. So there is a real risk here. In respect of the parking issue by your intruding neighbour, you should write a letter requesting the cessation of the parking.
Or if you are happy for this to continue, make it clear the parking is by your consent so as to protect against any prescriptive or possessory rights being acquired.
John Robson is Residential Conveyancing Manager at Ford & Warren Leeds.