What are conveyancing searches?

When property a property it is important to find out as much background information as possible about your chosen property. Conveyancing searches are carried out, instructed by your solicitor, to be able to provide you with this information.

What conveyancing searches are carried out?

Some of the main searches that are carried out include:

Local Authority Searches

A local authority search is carried out in two parts giving you an LLC1 Result and a CON29 Result. They are intended to provide the buyer with detailed information about the surrounding area of the property and help you avoid any unexpected issues once the purchase is complete.

LLC1 Results

LLC1 Results tell you about controls and conservation orders in the area surrounding your property. These will tell you if your property is a listed building, is in a conservation area, is situated in a tree preservation area and other controls such as smoke.

CON29 Results

Con29 Results will flag issues including planning permission applications relevant to the property, enforcement actions, building regualtions, any restrictions on future development, nearby road schemes, and contaminated land. If your property is affected by an approved future development, you will also be told whether you are due compensation as a result.

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More Conveyancing Searches

Title Searches

Title searches are an essential part of the conveyancing process which is one of the most important property searches and are, essentially, to prove the seller is the legal owner of the property and, therefore, has the right to sell it. Checks are made on the title register and title plan to tell you who previously owned the property, the previous purchase price, any rights of way over the property, any debts registered to the property. You will also be shown the property boundaries on a map, as well as the property location.

Water & Drainage searches

This is another essential search which tells you how your water supply gets to your property and how waste water and sewage are taken away. Knowing where these pipes are positioned is important information for future reference if, for example, you wanted to build an extension. A drainage search is also important so you know what length of drainage is your responsibility and what is the responsibility of the water board as drainage issues can be costly to fix.

Environmental Searches

Environmental searches can provide extremely useful information about the property you are looking to buy. They typically check for contaminated land and whether the property is build near a landfill or waste management site but also provide information on possible flooding, landslip or subsidence issues the property may be in danger of.

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Other searches that may be undertaken include:

Chancel Repair Liability The land registry keeps information on land that is bound to chancel repair liability. This search will tell you whether you would be liable to contribute towards any repairs to the church of the parish you live in.

Mining Search In some areas where mining was a common industry a mining search is a sensible precaution to take. The search is mainly to provide data on whether the property is built on potentially unstable ground and would therefore be prone to subsidence, or worse.

Commons RegistrationA Commons registration search, or common land search, will reveal whether or not the property is on the common land register and provides the buyer with details on restrictions in use of the common land. This is a search that is most frequently carried out in rural areas for properties that border village greens or open fields.

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How much do Conveyancing searches cost?

The cost of conveyancing searches varies depending on the number of searches that are required. However, the costs are usually included as part of the final fee to your solicitor. Typically, searches cost between £250-£350 depending on the number of searches you require.

How long do Conveyancing Searches Take?

The length of time for a search to be complete depends on the type of search being undertaken. Water and drainage and environmental searches, for example can take as little as 10 days, however, local authority searches can take significantly longer. The length of time for local authority searches to be complete also varies from one local authority to another. If this information is important to you it would be worth asking your solicitor, in their experience, how long do these searches take.

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