What is a property search and why do I need one?
Property searches are an integral part of the property purchasing process in England and Wales. Purchasers and mortgage lenders require assurances about the legal and environmental factors which might affect the legal ownership, use or value of a property.
Searches cover information about any binding obligations (known as Local Land Charges) which apply to the property, and for any additional environmental and planning information about the land and adjacent areas.
A standard local authority search consists of an LLC1 (search of the Local Land Charges Register), plus a CON29 The Enquiries of Local Authorities Form. Your solicitor may also wish to carry out additional questions on the CON29O depending on the specifics of your property.
What will my property search reveal?
LLC1 The Official Certificate of Search -
This is where you would find the Local Land Charges as described above which may be binding on successive owners (if applicable to the property):
Copies of notices and documents can be obtained via the Enforcement dept. Please email the Enforcement department direct
Disabled Facility Grants (DFG)
These are financial charges in respect of outstanding monies owed to the Local Authority. These amounts have usually been incurred as a result of works carried out by the Council in default and are binding on successive owners.
Home Improvement Grants
These are financial charges in respect of outstanding monies owed to the Local Authority. These amounts have usually been incurred as a result of works carried out by us in default and are binding on successive owners.
- Section 106 (S106)
Copies of S106's are available to download free of charge from our website. If you are unable to find the document you are looking for, please contact the Planning department direct.
Copies of these agreements can be obtained via Hertfordshire County Council.
CON29 The Enquiries of Local Authorities Form
This is an enquiries form, so although the information revealed is not binding, it could still affect your property.
The Planning dept. currently hold data back to 1948. Although there may be some records dating back further.
There are two ways to obtain an extent of highway plan:
You can send the request to HCC Land Charges giving them the address and the plan of the property subject to the search. They will respond to the request with information about their fee and payment methods. Fees can be found by clicking the link above.
Alternatively; you can select 'Additional Enquiry' when submitting your search via our Public Access System and put 'Highway Extent Plan required' in the enquiry box. You can then select update fee which will add the cost of a plan for single property to your search fee. For larger areas, please email HCC Land Charges for a quote.
Copies of notices and documents can be obtained via the Enforcement department
CON290 The Optional Enquiries of Local Authorities Form
How can I obtain copy documents?
Copy documents are usually held by the data owners. For example Enforcement Notices will be held by the Planning Enforcement Team; Section 38 and/or 278 agreements will be held by Hertfordshire County Council. If you are not sure which department to contact, please see above section titled 'What will my Local Authority Search Reveal'. You will find hyperlinks to the correct departments and/or information telling you speciifcally which department to contact.
Are Local Land Charges the same as Land Registry Charges?
No. HM Land Registry provide the Legal Evidence of Title to the land that has been registered in England and Wales. The Title Plan shows, usually by red edging, the general extent of the property registered under the title number shown. Title plans are prepared on the latest Ordnance Survey map available at the time of registration. The plan does not normally show who owns boundary features, such as fences and hedges.
The Title Register contains the details relating to the property. Each title register is in three parts: