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    Landlord is having trouble proving that she owns the place

    I saw a flat share via gumtree for just a double room. The landlord/lady is living in the property and she owns the place with her sister (who doesn't live there). As for the landlady herself, she seemed a bit simple and quite straight forward. I also met the current occupant of the room - a recent IT grad, looking for a job currently. Everything seemed ok so I went for it but I said that before I handover any money I want to see the mortgage certificate and photo id as proof of ownership, which she was fine with.

    Yesterday she came back to me and said that her sister couldn't find the documents and that she can show me the elec bill with her drivers license instead. I told her that is ok, and I will come round tonight to see that. If all ok I will ask her to fill out a tenancy agreement form that I bought from WHSmith and then I will sort out the payment via bank transfer (1 month in advance, 1 month deposit) for the move in date 19th Feb. She was fine with all of this.

    Today I found out that I can check who the property owner is registered with using a website called landregistry. So today I spoke to her to get her address and her sister's full name, which she happily gave. Afterwards she asked why, so I told her that I will use a website to check what name the property is registered under, and asked her if she is ok for me to do that. She was cool with all of it and asked me to just call her back once I've done that. About 10mins later I got a text saying that she spoke to her sister and she said I was taking things a little far as it is only a room let and other tenants haven't asked for anything like this so if I am like this she prefers to get another tenant in. A min or two later she rang me and said that her sister doesn't want me to do all these online checks as she doesn't know what it's all about. So if I do them, then they will find someone else. So I told her I will leave them and just come round to see the paper work like we originally agreed.

    But this got me a bit suspicious and since she doesn't have any way to know if I did the check or not, I decided to do it and then decide if I should go see her or not. However I found that landregistry didn't have details for the flats inside the block - just the entire building. I checked this out anyway, but it didn't give any clues about the actual flat itself. I then checked 192.com and found that the phone number for that property is listed under her sister's name for the past three years. So that made me feel a bit better.

    I quite like the place and really want to move in. But given what has happened, should I proceed with meeting her tonight to see the elec bill and drivers license??

    39 Comments

    I'm really sorry but I can understand what she's saying. I have rented my sisters place a fair bit over the years and I have never had anyone ask for proof of ownership. It would probably put me off too tbh, thinking ur gonna be a pain in the bum lol.... I would guess that is all it is:thumbsup:

    You also sound like you want to buy the house? Is normal to do all this checks?

    Original Poster

    lol, my friend did also say I may be going a bit over the top. Thing is it is via gumtree and I am just trying to be a little careful. It is my first time I will be living in a flatshare so I'm being extra cautious there too.

    I can see where Hannah is coming from, that is why I am thinking maybe she is just getting annoyed with me...

    If i was renting out a room i would probably think you were being a pain in the bum too. Every house ive tried to rent has been a case of the landlords doing checks on me, not the other way around!

    Banned

    You shouldn't have mentioned anything and just checked yourself. I'd say you'll have started your tenancy off on a wrong foot and you may not be able to recover from it.

    Original Poster

    Ok, I guess that part is clear; I am being a little annoying lol.

    So if I get a tenancy agreement form completed by her and then do the payment, that should be cool right? I mean to say from a legal point of view.

    I think you are doing right with all these checks. Who is to say that they are not just tennants sub letting without the permission of the owner.

    Enemy_of_The_State;7795292

    lol, my friend did also say I may be going a bit over the top. Thing is … lol, my friend did also say I may be going a bit over the top. Thing is it is via gumtree and I am just trying to be a little careful. It is my first time I will be living in a flatshare so I'm being extra cautious there too.I can see where Hannah is coming from, that is why I am thinking maybe she is just getting annoyed with me...



    I really wouldn't worry about it hun, just go round and see the paper work they have for u, tell them tht ur sorry ur being a pain but it's ur 1st time and I'm sure u'll be very happy;-)

    Let us know if their urine samples bring up anything suspicious.

    iNSOMANiAC;7795352

    Let us know if their urine samples bring up anything suspicious.



    :lol: :lol:

    if i was the landlord i probably would think you were being a bit nosey and pushy as a tenant. however last year my friend found a place on gumtree was very trusting paid the deposit and first months rent upfront and on moving day found the house was empty. tennants who had been living there had pretended to be the landlord and showed a few people round and taken deposits before they moved out and not much he could do as had no home and was £600 out of pocket. so worth checking but without telling them.

    Remember to take with you the DNA Kit and Gun shot residue swab kit.

    Also dust the place down and check for possible blood spatter before moving in.

    :thumbsup:

    Edit : take mug shots of the 2 sisters and get them both finger printed asap.

    Further Edit : If all of the above fails then put your head between your legs and call in Derek Acorah! :w00t:

    does all seem a bit extreme for the rent of a room on a month to month basis-even buying a tenancy agreement from wh smith? fair enough if you are a cautious person I spose but it may appear to them you are a tad over the top.

    Banned

    You sound like a nightmare to live with, I'm surprised they still want to let you rent the room

    The flats will be listed in the freehold for the whole property.

    Would check that out, can understand your worry.

    The land registry only charges £4 for a title, and takes 5 mins.

    You need to ring the Land Registry office where you live and ask to apply for Official Copies of the Register of Title without a plan.

    Say you don't have the title number and you will need to apply with the address (of the whole building not just your flat). The fee is £8 (could be cheaper for no plan).

    When the Official Copy comes back you can see on the proprietorship register who is the registered owner of the property.

    You don't need permission to obtain these documents.

    Providing the property is registered that is!!

    you need to apply to the council to verify that the building had planning permission when it was built and that the workmen were infact paid for their labour...Who knows who might turn up after you move in to repossses the house.!

    Banned

    Well OTT!

    I wouldnt let you near my place either tbh as you'll probably be demanding boiler safety certificates etc etc etc

    You sound like a prospective tenant from hell.

    Original Poster

    barky;7795408

    does all seem a bit extreme for the rent of a room on a month to month … does all seem a bit extreme for the rent of a room on a month to month basis-even buying a tenancy agreement from wh smith? fair enough if you are a cautious person I spose but it may appear to them you are a tad over the top.


    I wasn't aware of the tenancy form stuff. She suggested that I get hold of one and we can complete together.

    Enemy_of_The_State;7796119

    I wasn't aware of the tenancy form stuff. She suggested that I get hold … I wasn't aware of the tenancy form stuff. She suggested that I get hold of one and we can complete together.



    Still not letting you have the room......sorry.

    Original Poster

    Adam2050;7795505

    The flats will be listed in the freehold for the whole property.Would … The flats will be listed in the freehold for the whole property.Would check that out, can understand your worry.The land registry only charges £4 for a title, and takes 5 mins.


    Yeah that was the one I went for. It said there was no info for that flat, but there is for the block.

    Original Poster

    manda_jade;7795403

    if i was the landlord i probably would think you were being a bit nosey … if i was the landlord i probably would think you were being a bit nosey and pushy as a tenant. however last year my friend found a place on gumtree was very trusting paid the deposit and first months rent upfront and on moving day found the house was empty. tennants who had been living there had pretended to be the landlord and showed a few people round and taken deposits before they moved out and not much he could do as had no home and was £600 out of pocket. so worth checking but without telling them.


    Yeah, that was my concern as well - works out to a little over £1200 for me. I have heard of things like that going on too. But given the feedback so far, I guess the consensus is that I am being too hard on the landlady. It probably is just fine, so I will go have a chat with her and apologize for being so pushy, then hopefully we can agree on soemthing.

    Enemy_of_The_State;7796749

    Yeah, that was my concern as well - works out to a little over £1200 for … Yeah, that was my concern as well - works out to a little over £1200 for me. I have heard of things like that going on too. But given the feedback so far, I guess the consensus is that I am being too hard on the landlady. It probably is just fine, so I will go have a chat with her and apologize for being so pushy, then hopefully we can agree on soemthing.



    Sorry hun, didn't mean to sound like I was ridiculling ya;-)
    And whatever happens, don't come back in a few months and tell us that she's run out wiv ur money and now ur on the streets..........I wont wanna know:oops: lol

    I quite like the place and really want to move in. But given what has … I quite like the place and really want to move in. But given what has happened, should I proceed with meeting her tonight to see the elec bill and drivers license??



    As others have said, it might be out of your hands.
    If a tenant was doing all the checks you wanted to do, I would "get back to them".

    Banned

    Enemy_of_The_State;7796749

    Yeah, that was my concern as well - works out to a little over £1200 for … Yeah, that was my concern as well - works out to a little over £1200 for me. I have heard of things like that going on too. But given the feedback so far, I guess the consensus is that I am being too hard on the landlady. It probably is just fine, so I will go have a chat with her and apologize for being so pushy, then hopefully we can agree on soemthing.


    So you are paying £600 pcm just for a room? :w00t:

    Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady had scammed you out of deposit, rent etc you would have had some on here saying 'didnt you check blah blah blah' :roll:

    michelleleemoo;7797306

    Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady … Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady had scammed you out of deposit, rent etc you would have had some on here saying 'didnt you check blah blah blah' :roll:



    Exactly what's been pointed out above - if you'd just gone ahead with no checks, you'd have people calling you the biggest fool under the sun, you make an effort to try and make sure you don't get scammed and you still get knocked. If I were you, I'd rather be over cautious and not £1200 out of pocket. Have to say though, in my experiences of the 3 places I've rented, I've never come across a landlord telling me to get a tenancy agreement and we'll go through it together. It's always been drawn up waiting for me to sign.

    If you don't feel 100% comfortable, then find somewhere else. If you go through a letting agent, you might feel a bit safer and not have to panic so much :-D

    csiman;7797252

    So you are paying £600 pcm just for a room? :w00t:



    Seriously? I've not read the whole thread - but if this is true, come and stay with me. You can have the master suite for that. And I'll bring you breakfast in bed.

    Am hunting out deeds right now.

    Original Poster

    hannah19790

    Sorry hun, didn't mean to sound like I was ridiculling ya;-) And whatever … Sorry hun, didn't mean to sound like I was ridiculling ya;-) And whatever happens, don't come back in a few months and tell us that she's run out wiv ur money and now ur on the streets..........I wont wanna know:oops: lol


    It's cool Hannah. I needed to hear other people's opinion, to see how others would approach the situation. I didn't take anything personally.

    michelleleemoo

    Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady … Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady had scammed you out of deposit, rent etc you would have had some on here saying 'didnt you check blah blah blah'


    Charlie&Lola

    Exactly what's been pointed out above - if you'd just gone ahead with … Exactly what's been pointed out above - if you'd just gone ahead with no checks, you'd have people calling you the biggest fool under the sun, you make an effort to try and make sure you don't get scammed and you still get knocked. If I were you, I'd rather be over cautious and not £1200 out of pocket. Have to say though, in my experiences of the 3 places I've rented, I've never come across a landlord telling me to get a tenancy agreement and we'll go through it together. It's always been drawn up waiting for me to sign.If you don't feel 100% comfortable, then find somewhere else. If you go through a letting agent, you might feel a bit safer and not have to panic so much


    Yeah funny how that works out sometimes lol...

    Penny Saver;7797428

    Seriously? I've not read the whole thread - but if this is true, come … Seriously? I've not read the whole thread - but if this is true, come and stay with me. You can have the master suite for that. And I'll bring you breakfast in bed.Am hunting out deeds right now.


    Location is very good, and the room is ginormous with nice furnishing. It is london after all you see so I really can't complain about the cost itself.

    Update is that I went to speak with her and she was quite cool about it. She showed me the elec bill and driver's license and it all checked out. In the end my gut said everything was legit so I went ahead with it, drew out the contract both signed and I transferred the money via bank transfer (online banking).

    Supermod

    If you Paypal me £4 I will check this for you tomorrow as I have full instant access to the Land Registry.

    Original Poster

    magicjay1986;7799695

    If you Paypal me £4 I will check this for you tomorrow as I have full … If you Paypal me £4 I will check this for you tomorrow as I have full instant access to the Land Registry.


    I already checked Land Registry. There isn't any info on the flat itself on there; only the building.

    Supermod

    Enemy_of_The_State;7799710

    I already checked Land Registry. There isn't any info on the flat itself … I already checked Land Registry. There isn't any info on the flat itself on there; only the building.



    ...because you only viewed the Freehold title. You need to check the Leasehold title...

    Original Poster

    magicjay1986;7799773

    ...because you only viewed the Freehold title. You need to check the … ...because you only viewed the Freehold title. You need to check the Leasehold title...


    I rang them as well, they said they don't have the info...

    Supermod

    Enemy_of_The_State;7799789

    I rang them as well, they said they don't have the info...



    I find that very strange. Especially seeing as compulsory registration has been in force since 2003(ish) and they could have had the chance to reduce the fee by doing a voluntary registration. Hmm.

    Original Poster

    The kind of conversation I had with the guy over the phone was that their records rely on data from the post office - God knows why... And it is possible that the post office has no records / data about people in that flat, so because of that they don't have anything for that flat.

    michelleleemoo;7797306

    Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady … Good for you for being cautious, if you'd have posted that yr landlady had scammed you out of deposit, rent etc you would have had some on here saying 'didnt you check blah blah blah' :roll:



    I have never seen anyone criticise any member here or on any other site for not checking a landlords mortgage certificate and photo ID.

    Supermod

    Enemy_of_The_State;7799823

    The kind of conversation I had with the guy over the phone was that their … The kind of conversation I had with the guy over the phone was that their records rely on data from the post office - God knows why... And it is possible that the post office has no records / data about people in that flat, so because of that they don't have anything for that flat.



    With all due respect, are you sure that you had the right person etc? Who did you telephone?

    PM me tomorrow with the city in which the property is situated and I will see what number I can give you. Then you can see whether it was the telephone number you had.

    I genuinely cannot remember the last time I came across an unregistered property and I have been working in this arena for a little while now...

    Banned

    so are you seriously looking at a double room that costs £600 per month?

    Banned

    600 a month is cheap, 1 bed flat costs me £875
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