Innovative moment at the HM Land Registry:
In April 2018 the first ‘digital mortgage’ deed was lodged for registration!
Mortgage deeds are required by Lenders to secure and register their legal charge on a property.
Prior to completion, all borrowers are required to sign the mortgage deed in the presence of an independent witness being over the age of 17 and not a family member.
All borrowers must then ensure that their solicitor has the original signed mortgage deed. Without the mortgage deed- your solicitor is unable to complete.
These are then sent by the borrower’s solicitor, or the Lender’s solicitor, to HM Land Registry on completion of a purchase or a re-mortgage.
However the above process will soon be shortened drastically due to the HM Land Registry’s new digital mortgage!
HM Land Registry have been working alongside the Government Digital Service to create a digital mortgage. The digital mortgage will mean that a witness is no longer required and there is no risk of the mortgage deed being lost in the post on the way to the borrower’s solicitor! In turn, this will diminish the risk of a delay to the completion date.
The new electronic mortgage will mean that the borrowers simply need to log in and sign their deed at any time.
The Government Digital Service via GOV.UK Verify provides an identity assurance service to ensure that the Borrowers identity is verified to reduce the risk of the mortgage fraud.
At the moment the scheme was only introduced for re-mortgages, but we hope that this will also be available for property purchases too!
This is just the beginning of Land Registry’s plan to ‘become the world’s leading land registry for speed, simplicity and an open approach to data’. Find out more about the HM Land Registry Business Strategy 2017 to 2022 on the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/hm-land-registry-business-strategy-2017-to-2022
Luckjit Kaur Sidhu is a solicitor at Richard Webster and Co specialising in all residential, commercial or property litigation matters. Please feel free to contact Luckjit Kaur Sidhu or the Property team on 02034 754 321 regarding any enquiries that you may have. We look forward to hearing from you!