Fixed Fee in relation to trying to avoid Property Fraud
Property fraud is an increasing problem in today’s world. This happens when a criminal steals your identity, creates fake identification and then either sells or mortgages the property while pretending to be you.
Unfortunately the law does not simply give you your house back again if it is sold, and sorting out a fraudulent mortgage can be stressful and costly.
Your property may be at a high risk of fraud if:
- The property is rented out
- The property is empty, such as if you are abroad or in a care home
- The property is mortgage-free
- The property isn’t registered with the Land Registry.
So, what can you do to protect yourself?
- Make sure your address for service is up to date with the Land Registry.
If there is anything that a third party is trying to register over your property, the Land Registry will notify you by contacting you on your ‘address for service’ and will give you a time period in which to object.
Therefore, it is important that you keep this address up to date. If you do not receive the letter, the Registrar will simply register the item once the time period runs out. You can do this by making an application to the Land Registry using Form COG1 (if you are not represented by a conveyancer). You can also put an email address on the register.
- Sign up to Land Registry Property Alert
The Land Registry will alert you if any significant activity is registered on your property. This includes a mortgage or if someone registers an official search in anticipation of a purchase. Visit the Government website to sign up to the alert.
- Register a Restriction on Your Title
This restriction will stop anyone being able to register the new purchase without there being a certificate. This certificate will confirm that the conveyancer who is acting for the seller is satisfied that the seller is the same person as the one who is the registered owner.
At Churchers, we understand that registering a restriction can be daunting. We are here to assist with this on your behalf. We charge a fixed fee at a price of £200 + VAT plus disbursements of £60.
We are here to help you right the way through your transaction. Please contact a member of the Buying and Selling Your Home team on 01329 822 333 for more information regarding our property solicitor fees.