We have been advised by our solicitor that there is no 'Booklet of Title' for our impending house purchase.
The solicitor has advised that everything else in order and we can legally go ahead and purchase the house but if we come to sell in the future, the ease of the sell will depend on the importance the buyers have on obtaining the 'Booklet of Title'.
The solicitor has been great throughout but we are confused about how crucial these documents are without the knowledge that comes with a law degree.
I sold a property in the UK recently and it seemed that the physical 'deeds' (which are to me, the closest match to documentation, I can think of) are not necessary in a sale nowadays and in fact were surprised I still had them.
It would be great to get an idea of the perception of the importance of the 'Booklet of Title' from people with more legal knowledge to me and my wife.
Buying a first family home is worth doing right, so any advice will be much obliged.
are you the guy that posted the same question in the Accommodation & Property Forum?
Yes, I didn't find this forum first time around. The only reply there was that a 'booklet of title' was proof of legal ownership, which I have found out since is incorrect (I think this is more land registry title). Hence I wanted to consult a more legal minded forum.
Are you buying a Local Authority house?
That doesn't ring any bells with me. We are a straight forward second time purchaser with no local authority assistance, if that helps.
The property was built in 1992, with one careful owner since.
Any attempts to find the booklet of title have been fruitless.
I have never heard of a 'Booklet of Purchase",
After signing the contract and before the completion date of the sale, your solicitor raises some general queries about the property with the seller's solicitor. Requisitions on Title are a standard set of questions relating to the sale of a property that deal with such things as whether fixtures and fittings are included in the sale.
When your solicitor gets a satisfactory reply to Requisitions on Title, a Deed of Conveyance is drafted by him or her and approved by the seller's solicitor.
Your solicitor makes arrangements for searches to be made against the seller to ensure that there are no judgements lying against the seller (for example, bankruptcy or sheriffs' searches). Your solicitor should also conduct a search where the title to the property is held (either in the Land Registry or the Registry of Deeds) to ensure that there is nothing adverse attaching to the property, for example, an outstanding mortgage.
Once the Deed of Conveyance is approved by the seller's solicitor, your solicitor will contact your mortgage provider to request the issue of the approved loan cheque. This is the remaining balance of the purchase price. It is paid to the seller's solicitor and all documentation, and keys to the premises are handed over to your solicitor. It is rare now to have physical title deeds as these are in the Land Registry and your Solicitor will file a Deed of Transfer which effectively transfers ownership to the new purchasers.
Sorry I corrected the name in the original post. It is called the 'booklet of title', we have yet to sign for the house.
I still haven't heard it it and I would be loath to proceed without advice from your Solicitor as to what such a booklet is expected to contain....caveat emptor
Yeah I found it is not a common term used when I was researching on the Internet.
My perception of it is basically all the physical paperwork involved in house purchase/sale.
Nowadays it is all electronic so we do not need it to legally make the purchase.
It is only the perceived value of it from the next purchaser.
Maybe I can put it another way. Nowadays in the purchase of a house, if everything is legally in place, do you need the physical title or deeds? Or is it normal now to purchase a house with little to no legal documentation of ownership?
I'm finding this all a little confusing.
Thanks for your help.
In Irish terms, generally, a Booklet of Title is a copy of title deeds, planning documents etc. for a larger site, which is subsequently subdivided unto a housing estate.
It is prepared by the developer's solicitors and one would accompany the deeds for each house.
They get lost - not uncommon. Sometimes, the developer's solicitors can provide a copy, sometimes a neighbour.
These days, though, with compulsory registration in the Land Registry, there's not likely to be much in it that is relevant today or can't be reproduced.
Ask your solicitor what s/he thinks is in it that would be important.
As you say it is an old term but basically refers to the various documentation need to establish title, the concept of exchanging physical deeds to almost extinct as change of title is now registered in either the Land Registry or Property Registration Authority. FYI the Law Society frowns on the new trend to provide these documents electronically (e.g. on CD) and urges purchasers to have hard copy documents:
I certainly would prefer hard copy documents and an electronic copy for ease of filing.
It is very frustrating as our solicitor is saying you can go ahead and complete the sale legally but family members are warning us not to saying that if the booklet of title is out there, then the sellers family members by having them can lay claim to the property, which I think is absurd.
So yeah, solicitor saying go ahead and family saying no. Also the family are advising to go see an old family solicitor (old by years and acquaintance). I would assume a solicitor old in his years would also advise against buying without physical copies of title.
Even more annoying is that when I ask the family, which documents they percieve to be important, they obviously don't know - so we are dealing with people with strong opinions based on little knowledge.
In my mind, I am paying a solicitor to trust him and if he said we can legally buy the property then that should be that.
The only problem would come by selling the property in the future to buyers who are uncomfortable with buying without physical booklet of title - which is ultimately us right now. So we are our own problem.
Advice again welcome.
Your family members are wrong. Even if a printed book of title exists and someone has a copy, mere possession of the book doesn't give him any basis to claim that he owns the property.
The point of the book of title was to show that the person who is selling the land has the right to sell it to you. Large parts of what is now suburban Dublin (and other cities) were originally estates that were farmed. Over time, as the city expanded, they were subdivided, developed and sold off for housing. A single farming property might be subdivided into hundreds of smaller house sites.
Normally, when you sold land, you handed on the title deeds to the purchaser. But, obviously, when you subdivide a large property into hundreds of small properties and sell them off, you can't do that. So what the estate-owners would do is print off copies of the title documents, and give a set of printed copies (the "book of title") to each purchaser, together with a certificate to say that these were accurate copies of the title deeds held by the vendor. As the property is sold and resold, from owner to owner, the book of title gets passed on.
Right. The need for much of this passes when property title gets registered in the Land Registry. The old books of title still exist and still mostly get passed on, but they no longer have the same importance. If Bill is selling you his house, you no longer need to verify that he bought it from Jack, who bought it from Mary, who bought it from Joe, who bought it from the Pembroke Estate Company, who had the right to sell it because, look, here's a book with all their title deeds in it. If the property is registered to Bill at the Land Registry, then you know Bill is the owner and can sell it to you.
So, at some point the booklet of title for this house has been lost, or mislaid, or thrown away - because it's no longer needed. If your solicitor is happy that you can buy the house, then he's probably right. If somebody else has the book of title and produces it, it doesn't prove that they own the property, or have any claim to it. All it proves is that back in 1912 (or whenever) the Pembroke Estate Company (or whoever) owned the property and had the right to sell it to whoever bought it in 1912.
The names can be confusing but a booklet of title actually contains only supporting documents to the title itself. Most properties are registered with the property registration authority and your title is the folio with your name on it.
The supporting documents are things like NPPR discharges LPT printouts, Planning permission compliance etc these things are usually in the Booklet of title but if your solicitor has given you the go ahead to buy you already have these documents.
You may also be able to get a copy of the booklet of title from the original solicitor who dealt with the property after development
We have been given the go ahead from the solicitor to buy the property but he has told us to 'proceed with caution'. This has obviously made us very uncomfortable in taking this risk.
We are now in a position where we are chasing the Booklet of Title and specifically trying to find out whether it existed or not.
Is there anyway to prove (apart from confirmation from the original solicitors or builders) that there was never a Booklet of Title, by Land Registry map or anything?