Conveyancing searches are an essential part of the process when purchasing a property. These searches can reveal details that you might not otherwise have known and the results could help you to avoid making a very expensive mistake.
The key conveyancing searches every buyer should know
- The Local Authority Search
This is a data based search with no physical examination of the property. A search is made of the Land Charges Register (existing obligations and restrictions) and enquiries are made of the Local Authority. This search will reveal information such as whether adjoining roads and footpaths are publicly maintained, whether there are any planning decisions that affect the property and whether the property sits in a conservation area.
- The Water and Drainage Search
This search covers all things water related, including sewage disposal and water supply. It will reveal whether the property is connected for both water and sewage, as well as whether there are any public sewers, either within the boundaries of the property or nearby – if there are this could affect your ability to carry out future work.
- The Coal Mining & Brine Search.
If you are in an area where there may have been coal mining in the past (which includes a large part of our local area) then this search is essential. It will reveal coal or brine mining works or entrances, whether there have been works there in the past and whether any compensation has been paid to past owners of the property for issues such as subsidence.
Other searches to consider
While the Local Authority, Drainage and Mining searches are the main three, depending on the property and its location there are also other searches that you may want to include.
The Environmental Search
Most environmental issues aren’t visible to the naked eye. This search will show up any risks to the property or within 500 metres of it. That could include landslides or landfill, flooding, subsidence, waste sites and any locations of potential contamination.
The Flood Report.
This will give you information on flooding and flood risk in the area, including the type of flood risk e.g. surface water, ground water, proximity to watercourses etc.
The Commons Registration Search.
If the property you’re interested in is built on previously undeveloped land, abuts a village green or common land or there is a verge slip between the property and a public highway then the Commons search is essential. This will highlight whether anyone else has rights over the land and whether you must pay to use it.
A Planning Search.
If you want to find out about other planning applications in the vicinity of the property you are buying you may wish to undertake this search. The Local Search only searches against the extent of land you are buying.
For a free conveyancing quote please call 01756 799000.