Mortgage Fraud – is your property protected?

Property is a valuable asset – usually the most important that people own. Its value does come with risk however as it can be sold, mortgaged to raise funds – and targeted for fraud. If you own a property that is usually tenanted, is empty or is mortgage free then you are especially at risk.

In an effort to combat mortgage fraud, the Land Registry has introduced a restriction which can be registered against the title to your property. This restriction means that your property cannot be sold or mortgaged unless a solicitor or conveyancer provides a certificate to confirm they are satisfied that the person selling or mortgaging the property is the true owner. At the moment, there is no fee for entering this restriction provided you do not live in the property, for instance if it is empty because you are abroad or because you let the property to a tenant.

If you do live in your property, it is still possible to register this restriction although the Land Registry charges a fee of £50 to do so.

At Hunt & Coombs we will be recommending all investment purchasers apply for this restriction to be entered against the title as part of our normal conveyancing process. Should you already own an investment, empty or mortgage free property and wish to protect your property, please call us on 01733 882800 or follow the link below to send us an email and we will be pleased to assist you.

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This article has been prepared for general interest and information purposes only; it does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied on as such. While all possible care has been taken in the preparation of this article, no responsibility for the accuracy and/or correctness of the information and commentary set out in the article, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed or accepted by the firm or the authors.