UK Property Solicitors – Glossary

Land Registry
The Land Registry holds the main record of all land and property transfers in the UK. Upon completion of a transfer it is mandatory to register that transfer with the Land Registry. The Land Registry can provide the new owner with a Land Certificate and if a mortgage is involved the Land Registry can provide the lender with a Charge Certificate.

Local Authority Search
This is a standard form which is completed by the local authority following request by a solicitor. It includes questions regarding the property including building and planning permits, road plans and any proposals or restrictions for the area surrounding the property including whether or not it is within a conservation area.

Mutual Deed of Covenant for flying Freehold
This is a document which outlines or details each neighbours responsibilities where there is a flying freehold which is a property that hangs over another persons property apparently trespassing over the air space. Common flying freeholds are balconies and property built over access tunnels to backyards and garages.

Power of Attorney
This document empowers a person to make decisions and enter into contracts on behalf of another person. The document usually has restrictions. It is mostly used for conveyancing transactions when either the buyer or seller is a not a UK resident and a solicitor is often authorized.

Bank telegraphic transfer
In conveyancing matters this is the preferred method of transferring money from one persons account to another persons account by electronic means rather than by a physical transfer of cash or by cheque. Banks charge a fee for this service, which is used for convenience, security and for the speed of transfer. Most transactions are carried out by solicitors.

Charge on property
When money is borrowed to buy land or property (mortgage) the lender is able to secure the repayment of the money, with the consent of the borrower, by registering the liability as a ‘charge’ or ‘mortgage’ on the property concerned which means that before free unencumbered title to the property can be transferred to a new potential owner the debt must first be re-paid.

The contract is the legal document which witnesses that the buyer and seller have come to an agreement regarding their transaction. The contract spells out the details of the sale, including an exhaustive description of the property, the price to be paid and the personal details of both buyer and seller.

Deed of Assignment of a Life Policy
This usually relates to divorce or separation where an endowment policy has been used as a method of repayment and one persons interest in the policy is transferred to the other person.

The process by which the legal ownership of a piece of land or property is transferred from one person to another. An experienced solicitor usually deals with these matters.

Deed of Guarantee
This occurs where a third party is asked to guarantee repayments on the mortgage on behalf of a financially insecure borrower. This usually occurs when the lender has qualms regarding the capability of the buyer to pay off the mortgage on his own.

Deed of Postponement
This type of written agreement is used when one party postpones his legal rights relating to property in favour of another person and lets that other person claim his rights first. A common application would be for the prioritising of the repayment of several existing mortgages on a certain property.

Deed of Grant
This awards a beneficiary certain rights, for example the right of way.

Deed of Variation
A document that applies changes to the terms of another document related to the ownership of land.

Deed of Rectification
A document employed to correct errors present in any other documents related to land transactions.

Deed of Trust
A document which shows the details of each persons share in a property which is jointly owned.