Boundary Surveys & Land Registry Plans

Boundary surveys are undertaken in accordance with Land Registry guidelines. General boundary plans are used in the conveyancing process & become one of the title deeds. They are used to register a property with Land Registry, define a boundary line between 2 plots or sub-divide a single plot. They can also be used to define rights of way and easements over land belonging to others. The plans can be annotated with measurements to the boundary line from existing structures or be related to GPS derived national grid coordinates if required.

Boundary Plan with rights of access in Cornwall

General Boundaries

Many land owners are surprised to discover that Land Registry plans do not define the exact line of a boundary. They are very often based on O.S. mapping that uses a single line to delineate a boundary feature that may be several metres wide (such as a hedge) and are also subject to the O.S. accuracy which is defined as 1.0m for urban areas and 2.5m for rural areas. The plans only give an approximation of the location of the boundary. These plans are therefore referred to as showing general boundaries.

In order to define the exact location of a boundary, the deeds of the property can be consulted to see if there are any plans that were drawn up to a recognised scale, with dimensions appended or if there are any descriptions of the boundaries in historic conveyancing documents. If these do not exist then the only option is to look at what is on the ground and work out who owns the boundary features, such as walls, hedges, fences etc so that an accurate plan can be surveyed and drawn up. This process is made a lot easier if the landowners on both sides are in agreement!

Flying Freeholds

A flying freehold is a term used to describe a situation where the freehold of one property overhangs or underlies another. This is quite a common occurrence with older houses or buildings that have at some point in their life been subdivided. Quite often the dividing walls chosen for the subdivision at different floor levels don’t match up vertically and the result is a flying freehold. This can cause problems with getting a mortgage on a property and very often the mortgage lender will want to know more details about the extent of the flying freehold and what percentage this represents of the gross internal floor area.

By conducting a fully controlled survey of the floors in a building we are able to provide all the information a mortgage lender or other financial institution would need in order to make a decision on an application.