Sunday, May 22, 2005
Home owners must look after there own Title deeds.
Two major mortgage lenders are returning vital documents to homeowners about the properties they have lent money on.
C&G, part of Lloyds TSB, started returning documents this month and will send them back to a million mortgage customers in England and Wales by the end of the year.
Nationwide is returning documents to all customers who have borrowed money since 1999.
Lenders no longer need to keep the title deeds for properties in England and Wales.
Legal ownership in those countries now depends only on the information held by the Land Registry electronically.
There are some title deeds that don't have their contents put onto the land register
Philip Freedman, solicitorBut Philip Freedman, a property partner with solicitors Mishcon de Reya, told BBC Radio 4's Money Box programme the documents can contain vital information:
"Information at the Land Registry is sufficient to show that you own the property and that they have a mortgage over the property.
"But there are some title deeds that don't have their contents put onto the land register.
"So for example you might have agreed when you bought the property to pay something towards drainage or to maintain fences, and not all of those obligations are put onto the land register."
The documents can relate to works, searches and guarantees Mr Freedman also warned that many other documents which lenders are now returning must be kept, such as guarantees from builders, details of building regulation, or planning approval for alterations.