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  • Legal FAQs

    Title Indemnity Insurance

    2 apartments didnt sell at auction recently & Im very tempted by them. There is an issue with a strip of the garden as it is registered to builders other than the vendor (deceased). the whole garden is fenced off & the apartments have been owned by the deceased since Jan 2008 (11 years). We didn't bid initially as the lack of full ownership scared me. My solicitor doesn't seem to think it is much of an issue if we can get title indemnity insurance.

    The properties are now going to sealed bids. We sign the contract & give 10% deposit & if we are successful we own it in 4 weeks

    The apartments are in brilliant order, spacious, great location & fully furnished.... but this is scaring me. Has anyone any experience of this situation?

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    Title indemnity insurance is common.

    I`ve often had to take it out if the title is defective

    But this sounds like maybe what is called a `ransom strip` where builders hold back a strip of land in case the land behind and going from the public highway onto that land may be worth something to a developer in the future . They in effect hold people who may want to cross it to ransom for the years ahead . It may be on a separate title deed altogether owned by the builders  or your title could have some restrictive  special conditions attached to it which need to be explored .

    Your solicitor should fully explain why it isnt a problem to reassure your fears,

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    Jonathan Clarke. http://www.buytoletmk.com


    Thanks Jonathan, that makes sense. There is a development built to the left of this strip of land (which is actually now part of the driveway/parking for the apartments). The strip is therefore parallel to the developments rear gardens & with the apartments built isnt really of much use (other than holding me to ransom!). I'm a cautious person but this could be a good deal if i can stomach the risk!

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    Remember those buying lord of the manor titles. They had control over the common land and anyone with a house who had to drive over the common land part where held to ransom. They could not in effect access their own driveways.  Appears a great opportunity for the owner to hold you to ransom- watch out . Some people spend a lot of time looking for such land strips as it can be very profitable at some else expense.

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    Yes exactly! I appreciate the warning & I think it was exactly intended as that for the neighbouring development. However, they used a different access point.

    I'm wondering though if they did get difficult at any stage, can I just section off the bit in question & forget about it? It doesn't actually interfere with the entrance to the property & I could make a parking space elsewhere.

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