Property Searches

Here you will find frequently asked questions and explanations of some of the jargon and legal language associated with the home moving process.

Property Searches are a collection of reports which tell us lots of things about the property and surrounding area. These reports include things like the risk of flooding and ground stability as well as information about nearby planning permissions and any restrictions you might have in developing your new home.

Many law firms will only choose to order Property Searches once they’ve heard back from the seller’s solicitors. But we recognise that waiting for the seller’s solicitor response can cost us valuable time – whether that’s just a day or whether it’s a week, it still adds up. That’s why Brevis orders your Property Searches, where possible, as soon as you’ve completed our sign up process (which by the way only takes a matter of hours and can be fully completed in the comfort of your living room on a mobile phone).

We receive a number of reports within a matter of days. We will review these right away providing you with a guide which highlights some parts of these Reports which might of particular interest to you. We will also share these Reports with you and it is important for you to thoroughly read these for yourself. Please don’t rely solely on our guide as you may miss some factors which are important to you.

Ordering Property Searches for your new home is a vital part of the home buy process. They reveal information and potential issues that may have an impact on your decision to buy, or might give you guidance on what you need to do in order to protect yourself and your new home.

A Priority Search is high on the list of importance when buying a property. Once you have committed to buy the property (exchanged contracts) you wouldn’t want anyone else moving the goalposts.

This is where a Priority Search comes in. It’s a request to the Land Registry for an official copy of the title to the property you are buying and is usually done last minute before getting the keys (completion). This is because it ensures and guarantees that no changes are made to that property title while the formalities of the purchase are being wrapped up.

Moving forward to completion and registering your ownership without conducting the Priority Searches is potentially risky as the search re-confirms that the seller has the right to sell the property to you and shows whether anyone has applied any charges to, or acquired any rights on the property since the original searches were carried out, which can be weeks or sometimes months earlier.

Once the Priority Search comes back ‘clear’ (i.e. it doesn’t show anything of concern) then you get the added benefit of ‘priority’ for 30 days, which ensures that you get exclusive rights on the title of the property and no one can make any further changes to the register before you are registered as the new owner. For this reason, we, like probably all solicitors and conveyancers, undertake this check to protect your interests.

Please note that all information provided in this FAQ is for general reference only. It should not be used as a sole or definitive source, nor is it intended to be used for decision making in place of appropriate advice from a qualified legal professional. As such the information is provided as-is and Brevis cannot accept any responsibility or liability for any loss or damage resulting from any errors or ommission in, or any reliance on, information contained in this guide.