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propertylawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 288
Experience:  Property solicitor with expertise in commercial and residential property transactions.
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I have a house that I want to demolish it and build 3 other

Customer Question

I have a house that I want to demolish it and build 3 other dwellings. There is a small piece of land (not more than 7 sqms). This land is attached to my property only. This piece of land is needed to widen the current entrance for the planning application to be approved by the council. The highways informed us that they do not own it. It does not belong to any of the near properties according to the land registry. The project will die if this land was not added ( because of cars entrance ). Don't know what to do.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

What have you done to establish who owns the land?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Helllo,Firstly, the planning officer told us that according to the high way maps that she has, the highways do not own this piece of land. Afterwards, I bought the title plan of the nearest house (the only one that has borders with the piece of land, in addition to us.) The title plan showed that they do not own this land. Then, I phoned the solicitor who helped me in buying the house and he sent me a map that has all the registered land in the area being in red. This small piece of land was not colored in red, whivh indicates that it is not owned by any of the houses in the area. Later, we contacted the council's officers who advised us to ask the highways. So, we paid around 30 pounds for the highways, for them to tell us who owns it, and they sent us saying that they do not own it while sending a map having the lands owned by them in the area. When comparing the two maps (the one from the land registry and the one from the highways) this is the only piece of land that is not clear who the owner is in both.Thanks
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

You have examined all of the usual avenues of enquiry. It is therefore unregistered land (not showing on the land registry's registers) and therefore it will be difficult to establish who the owner is.

Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Will the land in question become 'highway' once/if developed?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello,Thanks for the reply. I do not know if it would be added to our property or it would be a highways land as we just want it as an entrance. The important question is that if we do not know the owner, are there any procedures that should be taken to use this piece of land that has no owner?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ifvit is highways is ok with me. I just want to use some of it for cars movementThx
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello. I need ab answer please on what could be done to use this land that has no owner. Are there any procedures that should be taken before it coukd be used?
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

I have looked into this further. Highways will not appropriate the land and will not consider any application where ownership is uncertain.

Unless you can establish who the owner is then it will be an issue and difficult to proceed.

An option is to fence it and try to claim possessory title but that is a 10 year wait. Although the owner may surface during this period but the land will become a ransom strip and the paper owner can effectively hold you to ransom.

Without knowing who owns the land you are stuck.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your answer. An urban planner told me that I can make an ad in a local newspaper asking who is the owner of this piece of land. Does this make any sense?