There may be occasions when you want to check what properties your company owns. For properties that are registered at the Land Registry, this is possible by doing a search in the index of proprietors’ names.
The Land Registry is required to keep an index of proprietors’ names. This shows the proprietors of the registered properties and also the proprietors of any registered charges, along with the title numbers.
So if you do a search of the index of proprietors names using a form PN1 in the name of a company, the search will pull up a list of titles that are owned by company. If that company also has charges registered over other properties, the search will list the titles of the charged properties.
The general rule is that you need a separate form and fee of £11 for each name searched, but if a company has had various changes of name you can use one form PN1 with a schedule of names.
Can you search any name and find out what properties they own?
You can search against a corporate body but not against an individual, as the index of proprietors’ names is classed as ‘personal data’. An individual can carry out a PN1 search in respect of their own name but otherwise to search against an individual the applicant would need to satisfy the Land Registry that they have a particular interest, such as a trustee in bankruptcy searching against the name of a bankrupt.
Examples of when it could be useful include:
- there may have been transfers of properties between group companies and you want to check the properties registered in the names of various companies
- developers with multi-land holdings may want to find out what parcels of land are left in their titles after houses or units have been sold
- if you are a lender, to check the titles where you are the proprietor of registered charges
- if you are a prospective lender doing your initial due diligence (or a lender doing a security review), it will provide a useful summary of the registered properties owned by a group of companies, or
- you may simply want to double-check the property holding in the name of your company
For a simple search, it has many practical benefits.