Land Registry Launches New Service To Tackle Property Fraud

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Land Registry Launches New Service To Tackle Property FraudProperty Alert Will Help Property Owners And Landlords
Avoid Becoming Victims Of Property Fraud

The Land Registry has launched a new service called “Property Alert” this week, to help protect property owners from becoming unwitting victims of fraud.

Property fraudsters can often attempt to claim ownership of a property by impersonating the registered owner or by using forged documents to give the impression that they are the legal owner of the property.The fraudsters then attempt to raise money by mortgaging the property without the real owner’s knowledge, before disappearing without making payments, leaving the real owner to deal with the consequences.

The claims may sound far-fetched but it does happen and the consequences are often lengthy and costly to put right.

Landlords who have moved out of their former principal residence and then let it out to tenants were among those considered to be the most at risk from property fraud, however simple methods can be used to protect the landlords interests in addition to the new service offered by the Land Registry, such as comprehensively tenant referencing all applicants to establish if they are trustworthy or not before offering a tenancy, as this detailed information will reveal the employment, financial and renting history of applicants.

Alasdair Lewis, Director of Legal Services at the Land Registry, said: “Following a successful trial of Property Alert, we hope that many more UK  property owners and landlords will want to sign up for this new free service to help them protect what is probably their most valuable asset.”

According to the Land Registry, property owners can register up to three properties to be monitored by Property Alert, good news for private rented sector landlords with small rental property portfolios.

Email notifications will be sent to the property owners when the Land Registry receives an application to change the details on the register as well as for any official or financial searches.

The new system means that the real property owner will be made aware of any suspicious activity as soon as the Land Registry receives any requests.

For example, if a bank search has been conducted but the property owner has not applied for a mortgage would be treated as suspicious activity. The property owner will then be able to seek legal advice, contact Action Fraud or contact the bank in question to tell them they are the real and registered owner of the property and have not applied for a mortgage.

For more information on the Tenant Referencing Services provided by the UK’s leading providers of specialist products and services for landlords and letting agents – Legal4Landlords – Click Here


This was written by Mike Clarke. Posted on at 11:30 am. Filed under Referencing. Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow comments here with the RSS feed. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.