I am about to complete on buying my first home. Will I receive the Deeds to the house and, if so, should I give them to my Building Society for safe keeping?
Lenders have for some time now adopted a policy of “dematerialisation”. This means they are happy to receive written confirmation that your title to the property is registered at HM Land Registry along with their legal charge by way of security for their mortgage monies.
Accordingly, you will find that if you do send your Deeds to the Building Society they will simply return them to you for your own safe keeping. The increased cost of storage has resulted in your Lender looking to you to retain all associated documentation and they simply rely on the registration process to access the information electronically at any time through their direct links with HM Land Registry.
This, however, can cause problems in that when you instruct your solicitor to sell your property some important documents may not be available. The Lenders don’t have them and the likelihood is that, while you may have received them at some time, you may have forgotten where you put them.
In the absence of these documents your solicitor will have to request official copies from the Land Registry at a cost of £8 to £10 each. You are strongly advised to either lodge your documents in safe custody with your solicitor, some of whom will not charge for the facility, or keep these documents safe, recording precisely where you have put them.