Voluntary Registration of Land – Why It Is Beneficial to Register Before Selling Land?

The government has maintained a registry of land in England and Wales since the enactment of the Law of Property Act 1925. Registering land removes the need to examine the history of the title and provides an up-to-date snapshot of who owns the land and matters affecting the same.

How much land is currently registered?

According to the latest figures from the Land Registry 88.98% of the land in England and Wales (this figure increases to 89.79% for Norfolk) is currently registered which still leaves a considerable part of the country unregistered. Whilst it is now compulsory to register land on the majority of property transactions the Land Registry actively promote voluntary registration and in certain circumstances offer reduced fees.

What are the advantages to having a registered title?

•           Security – A registered title is guaranteed. If a loss is suffered due to an omission or mistake compensation may be provided.

•           Speed – The conveyancing process is streamlined and simplified.

•           Rectifying defects – Registration may reveal title and boundary issues which can then be tackled head on rather than delaying the conveyancing process.

•           Fraud – The risk of fraud which can result from copying or withholding title deeds is minimised.

•           Certainty – Registration gives you peace of mind that you are not leaving problems for your beneficiaries to resolve when you are gone.

•           Proof of ownership – It is possible to download a copy of your registered title at the Land Registry for a small fee which can be provided as evidence of your ownership. This is particularly useful if you have a large portfolio of property.

•           Cost – Some property solicitors charge additional fees for dealing with unregistered land owing to its complexity.

Are there any disadvantages in registering land?

•           Some landowners are reluctant for their private information to be accessible to other members of the public however we believe this is a small price to pay given the advantages outlined above.

The aim of registering land is to provide a straightforward and safe way of transferring land between parties which assists in combating fraud and which, should ultimately streamline the conveyancing process saving you both time and money. For any further information please do not hesitate to contact the Residential Conveyancing team on 01603 677077 or email