One of the hot topics at the moment is Property Fraud and what you can do to protect your property and avoid falling victim to this crime. We have all been told about Cyber Crime and what we should be doing to protect ourselves but do you know what to do to try and prevent Property Fraud?
Firstly, as we know, criminals are not particularly fussy. They can be working alone or part of a larger syndicate and can be very opportunistic. Criminals can forge ID such as passports and bank statements for both individuals and Companies.
Empty Properties, Mortgage Free Properties and Deceased Sales are considered to be very vulnerable. Although Property Fraud exceeds those examples it can also affect people who live overseas for example. Fraud can also exist within families as well; this might involve aged or other vulnerable members.
If you are buying a property but it is not your intention to live there, you can have a Restriction placed on the Register. This is designed to prevent fraud. Having this type of Restriction registered means that a Solicitor must make a Declaration stating they have checked that the Proprietor is one and the same. You will need to advise your Solicitor if this is something you require.
The Land Registry also have a free monitoring service which is available to anyone. This is also in an effort to combat Fraud. It is aimed at anyone who feels they could be at risk of Property Fraud. Once you sign up you will then receive email alerts when certain activity occurs which means you can take action when necessary.
Again, this service is free. Please use the following link:
It also extremely important to make sure you advise the Land Registry should you ever change address. It is vital that they have the most up to date contact details for you so that they have no issues in attempting to contact you. They may need to write to you when they receive an application regarding your property and without up-to-date details you may never receive that important correspondence.
They can hold 3 addresses for you as your Address for Service including your email and updating your details is free.
If your property is empty, it would be a good idea to inspect it regularly where possible to check for unauthorised access.
If you have any concerns or questions then please do not hesitate to contact us so we can discuss it further.