When you buy a house, your solicitor will make a search of the council's records to ensure there are no hidden surprises, such as motorways at the bottom of your garden or outstanding Notices requiring you to take action to remedy an earlier wrongdoing.
Please note the information given in a search relates to the property the subject of the search and not other properties in the vicinity of the property.
Official Local Land Charge Searches
The Local Land Charge Section carries out all official searches covered by the Local Land charges Act 1975, guaranteeing comprehensive replies to the official LLC1 and CON29 enquiries signed by the Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council "Proper Officer".
The Law Society, which regulates solicitors, encourages the use of official searches and considers that alternative personal searches of the statutory register, disclosing only limited information, should only be undertaken with the approval of the client when time does not permit official searches. You are advised to confirm with your solicitor that an official search has been undertaken and to inspect the Certificate of Official Search.
The search will be in two parts:
- LLC1 - this first part, the Official Certificate of Search Form, deals with all the registerable charges, for example financial charges (registered against the property by the local authority), improvement grants, tree preservation orders, conditional planning consents and agreements.
- CON29(R) - the second part called Enquiries of Local Authorities Form deals with issues such as road schemes, the planning history of the property and various notices which affect the property.
Please note that searches must include the following when submitted to be accepted for processing:
- If a search is submitted by a solicitor, cheques drawn on the solicitor's client account are requested, made out with the correct amount to Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council. Clients own cheques are not accepted as a method of payment. Please contact us regarding the fee.
- The correct address quoted together with an up-to-date scale plan in duplicate showing the extent and location of the land subject of search, clearly edged in red.
Following HMRCs decision that CON29R and CON29O products are subject to VAT at the standard rate of 20%, we will be increasing our fees from 31 March 2017. Please see fee details below. A VAT receipt will be included in the search results. If you need any further information please contact us on 01707 357357 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: The statutory LLC1 Official Certificate of Search is not subject to VAT.
VAT @ 20%
LLC1 & CON29R (residential & commercial)
CON29 (on its own)
CON29O questions 4-21
CON29O question 22
CON29R (additional parcels of land)
Examples of the information only to be found by submitting a CON 29(R) are given below:The CON 29(R) enquiries questionnaire, which forms part of the official search, contains many 'Warning' questions, the answers to which you will not find on any of the statutory registers.
- Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPO)
- proposed Tree Preservation Orders (TPO)
- many informal notices under planning and highways laws not found on any register.
- road proposals or schemes (including road widening).
- proposed enforcement action or breach of conditions notices.
Reasons to use the Local Authority
- High quality official local land charges searches from definitive records
- Experienced staff with excellent local knowledge
- No expedition fee
How to request a search
To submit a full search, please supply the Local Land Charges Section with the forms LLC1 & Con29R which are available from your solicitor, or you can buy them from law stationers.
Both the LLC1 and CON29(R) forms should be submitted at the same time if answers to both are required along with 2 plans with the land to be searched clearly edged in red.
Electronic - simply email the forms and location plan to: email@example.com - Then send the cheque to the address below. Our current fees are shown above.
If you require additional advice relating to your search please contact us on one of the following telephone numbers: 01707 357357 or 01707 357 358.
Official Searches should be sent to:
Local Land Charges, Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City, Herts AL8 6AE or DX 30075 Welwyn Garden City - 1
Types of searches undertaken in the house buying process
Drainage Water Searches
Thames Water Utilities Ltd looks after the network of public sewers in the Welwyn Hatfield borough. If you require further information please contact 0118 925 1504 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Land Registry Searches
Land Register deals with ownership of property. If you require further information, please contact the HM Land Registry - Leicester 0300 006 0411 or visit the Land Registry website.