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Land Registry Question

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magsmay | 11:32 Thu 11th Oct 2012 | Property
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Hi -I've been directed here from a google search and I can't get any answers from Land Registry site so hope someone may be able to help. A family member has bought some land next to my cottage and is transferring part of a field that has its own Title number to me. We are 'doing it ourselves' as it was going to cost £500 for a solicitor to do it. I am filling in a TP1 which is quite straight forward but have come up against a query. The Title has a couple of covenants on relating to right of way for Services over land and also a covenant not to do anything obnoxious on the land that will devalue surrounding properties. When I fill in the TP1 do I need to copy out these covenants for the new Title that will be created and add them as a Schedule or are these covenants automatically transferred over to the New Title? -There is no mortgage on the land and no money is changing hands - should I just bite the bullet and get a Solicitor? -Many thanks!

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This is less than an hour's work for a solicitor, so it's staggering that this profession still thinks it can get away with this sort of nonsense. Nevertheless what you have been quoted is high - I've paid around £350 a couple of years ago for something similar - but only because the seller's legal representative refused to deal with me as a 'non-qualified' person.

To answer your question, first a caveat - I cannot, of course, provide you specific advice. However my general advice would be:

If the covenant BENEFITS the land being transferred to you and it is of use to you in the ownership of the 'strip' you are acquiring (say it gave you right of way over someone else's land) then it is my understanding that the proprietor (your family member) can split the convenent benefit and transfer it onto you, whilst retaining the same over his retained land.

If the convenant BURDENS the land owned by the family member, he/she would be well-advised to ensure transfer of the convenant onto you to bind you to it's limitations. This is of course essential if it something like a right to run pipes under the land and you will end up owning a section where the pipes run.

The covenants are not automatically transferred - look at section 12 - Additional Provisions. This is where the wording goes.

Finally, I believe that you should provide a minimal consideration for transfer of the land - £1 should do it.

The LR are quite helpful in dealing with laypeople - phone and ask them - though they won't provide you with specific advice.
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thanks for taking the time to give such a detail answer. yes the Solicitors fees are ridiculous -considering I have had to pay for a survey of the field which was £400. (the land is 9 acres and we are taking off a 3 acre paddock) Its exactly section 12 I was wondering about and yes there are both positive and restrictive Covenants on the title. I will call up the land Registry helpline but you have clarified the point that the new title needs to benefit from the positive covenants existing on the original Title(rights of way etc) and perhaps a few restrictive covenants to reflect those already lodged on the retained land (not to use the land for a purpose which could be deemed obnoxious or bring down the value of surrounding properties). Thank you for your help
Good lord - surveying a field? - who convinced you that was a good idea? Sounds like money for old rope. What were you hoping the survey to protect you against? Asbestos dumped on the land? Motorways being driven through it? Nevermind, it's done now.

I think you have the gist of my answer; I'm saying the seller really must transfer any existing convenants that burden the 9 acres onto your 3 acres, because otherwise he lays himself open to you doing something obnoxious on the land, and the existing convenent-holder comes back to your family member as an unhappy bunny. It is up to the seller to give you any benefits he may wish to transfer - normally should rights would carry a price to be negotiated - but perhaps not an issue since you are both family members.

By the way, you may wish to do a local search in person on the land at the local authority planning department. It only costs a few pounds. This is part of what a solicitor would automatically do (only they don't do it in person). It shows if there are any local authorities charges against the land.

The only other issue to be sure about is that the boundaries (to third party owners are clear and unambiguous - not the common boundary where the land-split is occuring
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Hi firstly -we had to have an accurate map of the field done, with the boundaries of the new field showing and it had to be to scale done by a chartered surveyor -the land Registry insist on this. The land has been recently purchased by my daughter so all the searches are current, including all local authority searches and a mining report. So far this 'free' field has cost us a fortune including nearly £1000 to fence it LOL! -still its putting around £50k on the value of our house so i shouldn't complain. thanks for the advice '-)

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