'Search' for issues
when buying a property
A legal expert is advising property
buyers to choose the right type of 'search' when planning a purchase.
Sarah Barnes, head of the Residential Property team at regional law firm
Napthens, which operates an office in Southport, explained that when purchasing
a property; especially when using a mortgage; it is advisable to obtain what
is known as a search pack.
This will include a local search, water and drainage information, environmental
and flood searches. The local search reveals various useful information
regarding a property, but will only search within the boundaries.
Sarah warns that if a property buyer is concerned or interested to learn of
issues outside the immediate boundaries, such as planning applications, a search
known as a 'plan search' will need to be undertaken instead.
She said:- "This is an additional cost, but is extremely worthwhile if you
are concerned about the development of a field or unused area near to your
property, for instance.
A local search will provide information in relation to the roadways serving the
property, whether there are any planning permission and applications and a vast
amount of other information. This information can often be particularly
difficult to understand, as a large amount of information is included within one
document; most of which can appear confusing and lengthy.
A legal adviser will review the local search, highlight any issues you need to
be aware of and will raise any queries with the seller's lawyer about any entry
revealed in the search which is unclear or requires them to provide documentation.Other information including whether the property is located in a conservation
area, if it's a listed building or is subject to a community infrastructure
levy. This is all useful information, but sometimes more is needed. In that
instance, a plan search is the best option, and a legal adviser will make sure
the correct type is available."