• Not all land is registered with Land Registry – over a third in England and Wales is not
• All land and all buildings have an owner – this includes waste land, scrub land, abandoned properties, disused land, empty buildings
• Adverse possession takes at least 12 years, sometimes as much as 30 years
• Unregistered just means that the property or piece of land is not registered with land registry it does not mean that it is ownerless.
Finding the owners of unregistered land UK is not an easy thing to do, there are no clear ways of finding owners; it is a case of investigating old documents and maps, speaking to people and researching information. Some people do not want to find the owners of vacant land they would prefer to try and claim the land through adverse possession, this takes 12 years as a minimum and if the owner comes out of the wood work at any time then you are in trouble. Some people suggest putting a fence round the land and using it, this is the principle idea of adverse possession but they fail to mention what happens when you fence it off at a cost of thousands and then someone comes out and proves ownership, you have wasted your money. It is easier and more honest to simply find the owner and speak to them regarding the vacant land or building, you can then ask permission to use the land or even look at buying vacant land from them. In the UK over a third of all vacant land is not registered and finding the owners of land UK searches go on all the time.
In common law, adverse possession is the process by which title to another’s real property is acquired without compensation, by holding the property in a manner that conflicts with the true owner’s rights for a specified period. Circumstances of the adverse possession determine the type of title acquired by the disseisor (the one who obtains the title as a result of the adverse possession action), which may be fee simple title, mineral rights, or other interest in real property.
Adverse possession’s origins are based both in statutory actions and in common law precepts, so the details concerning adverse possession actions vary by jurisdiction. The required period of uninterrupted possession is governed by the statute of limitations. Other elements of adverse possession are judicial constructs. Adverse possession is sometimes called squatters rights.
Finding the owners of private roads
This can be a laborious task and is complicated; you cannot go down the adverse possession due to the frontage being used by more than one party. There are ways to trace the rightful owner of any private road but it is not easy. It may be a good idea to go straight to a professional company regarding these searches.
Abandoned properties searches
Searching the owner of abandoned property would work in the same way as finding the owners of unregistered or unclaimed land.
The starting point for any land search UK should be to contact the local Land Registry to confirm that the vacant land or building is indeed unregistered with them, you can save a lot of time and effort by doing this on the off chance that it is registered, saying that over a third of all vacant land is still not registered in England and Wales.
So what to do next? Finding the owners of vacant land is difficult, there is no easy way, you cannot simply access a database and find the information you must become an investigator. The first steps should be to
• Find any old documents
• Speak to local people
• Investigate all information given fully
You can use a company to find the owners of unregistered land, some people try solicitors to do this but they are very expensive and sometimes use outside agencies to carry out the work on their behalf at further cost to yourself. Some companies specialise in finding land owners in the UK. Charges vary so look into the matter closely. Different search terms will bring up different products and services but you should search the following terms in Google
• Find the owners of unregistered land Uk
• Find the owners of vacant land
• Find the owners of abandoned properties.
These should give you a good idea of some of the companies out there. Good luck finding the owners of a piece of unregistered land.