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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

At last - Local Land Charge searches 'can take just seconds'

Automated search companies have heaped praise on HM Land Registry following the digitisation of local land charge data - the LLC1 documentation. 

From yesterday morning anyone requiring local land charge searches for property or land in the local authority area of Warwick district council have been able to get them directly from HM Land Registry - the first authority to have this facility.

The Registry says it is also working with up to 26 other local authorities in England over 2018 and 2019 to migrate their LLC1 data to a central, digital register as part of a phased migration approach. The other authorities are known to include Liverpool, Blackpool, Norwich, Peterborough and Lambeth.

Once the data is migrated, anyone will be able to get instant online search results via Gov.UK and the other HM Land Registry channels.

The aim is to improve the speed of delivery of LLC1 searches, which are used as part of the property conveyancing process.

One company taking advantage of the new facilities was SearchFlow, which says its LLC1 order was processed “in just a matter of seconds” and “marks a step-change in the way Local Land Charges search data is accessed and processed.”

“We are delighted to have completed our very first LLC1 search this morning. This aims to improve the speed of delivery and we are proud to support our clients in seamlessly accessing this data, without them having to change any of their working practices” says SearchFlow operations director Stephen McCluskey.

Andrew Lloyd, managing director of Search Acumen, says the facility will transform property transactions, which until now has taken anything from one business day to 40 days.  

“LLC searches have too often been the fly in the ointment for both residential and commercial property transactions. Improved data access, standardised fees and faster turnaround times mean solicitors and conveyancers will save millions of days a year in unnecessary waiting times – and property buyers will save millions of pounds in unnecessary costs” he claims.

  • Peter Ambrose

    Before anyone who reads this and thinks - fantastic, no more excuses from lawyers that "they are waiting for the local search" because "it takes minutes" it's vital to point out that this is only one part of the local authority search. Sadly there is another part that still needs to come from the local authority itself.

    It's good news ... And welcome, but does NOT increase the overall speed of getting the local searches ... Sorry to burst any bubbles out there.

  • Steve Davies

    Anyone reading this article could assume that this will speed up the housebuying process, however it has been clearly identified in the governments call for evidence at the end of 2017 that searches are very rarely responsible for delays. This development to digitise the Local Land Charges register is only one register forming part of the local search and has been implemented at only one council of over 300. The remainder of the registers and data searched to create the search report (called the con29) will still need to be sourced and compiled in the same way by either private search companies or local councils. Once this project is implemented at all councils, solicitors and conveyancers will still need to order the con29 search separately from existing providers. HMLR have confirmed there are no plans to digitise the con29 data and the conveyancer cannot exchange contracts any quicker therefore which must be very confusing to the average housebuyer or seller reading this.

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