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A portal to time saved

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Digital services
Laptop screen showing portal page.
Thaspol Sangsee/

Like all organisations, HM Land Registry has had to respond to service disruption since the national lockdown began on 23 March. As the UK continues to weather the present circumstances, it is clear our digital services are increasingly of critical importance while more people are working remotely.

We have been working hard to keep providing our services, and are now delivering our services that are essential to enable property transactions within normal service levels. In our efforts to maintain service standards in these unique circumstances, the HM Land Registry portal, where 74% of our applications are made, has played a crucial role in ensuring we continue to process as many applications as possible. We’ve been working on a few enhancements to this vital service to make it even simpler to use, changes that now seem even more important in the current circumstances.

Viewing and submitting applications

In the near future customers will be easily able to find and view the latest updates on applications submitted through the portal along with the latest correspondence – including notices, requisitions and letters – all in one place. The accessible, user friendly interface will make it quicker to find the information they need, including an estimated completion date which will help with forward planning, and, alongside our other enhancements, reduce the time customers would previously have spent contacting us for status updates.

View My Applications enables direct access to all applications where customers can search, view and filter directly from one screen.

Later this year we’ll be opening up our Digital Registration Service to all HM Land Registry portal users; this is currently being piloted with a limited number of customers. This will simplify the way customers submit applications to us, starting with our most common form – the AP1. Under the Digital Registration Service any potential errors on the AP1 will be identified and highlighted prior to application submission, preventing the need for us to send out requests for further information (known as requisitions) and saving our customers time and money.

A variety of features, including fee calculations, prompts to attach missing documents and highlighting discrepancies between names entered on the application and those in the register, will all minimise the more common issues we find in applications. Additionally, a new capability to pre-populate some aspects of the form based on existing information will save valuable time in submitting and processing applications. Customers will also be able to submit up to 10 transactions under the same title within a single application, as well as being able to save progress in an application and return to complete it later. These enhancements will all save repeated entry of the same information.

View My Applications and the launch of the Digital Registration Service will transform how customers access, submit and progress applications. The enhanced Digital Registration Service helps us get information from customers in a clearer format which helps us to deliver a speedier service for customers.

Since our Business Strategy was published in 2017, HM Land Registry has embarked on an innovative and ambitious digital transformation programme. We are continuing to review our services, taking into account the uncertain and rapidly changing landscape and listening to our customers. By working in close partnership with our customers we will continue to explore how we can use our Business e-services to make it even simpler, faster, and cheaper than ever for our customers to access, process and submit applications.

We welcome your comments about this blog in the comments below. Please note that we are unable to discuss individual cases through the comments section and would request that all such queries be directed to our contact web form where you will receive a response as soon as possible.


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  1. Comment by John Harvey posted on

    Great news

    I've been monitoring the LR blogsite during lockdown and it seems that more and more Citizens are going direct to LR rather than their conveyancers. Cant see the trend reversing. Sooner or later conveyancers are going to get into trouble for not being as up-to-speed on applications as they could be

    When will conveyancers be able to nominate their clients for direct access to Application Enquiry ? And required to state their policy on this on websites to help informed decisions on selecting conveyancers. Like price information

    Thanks to all for keeping things running.

    When will Adam get some leave? He seems to be more or less left on his own but is still setting standards for reassuring laypeople which conveyancers find difficult to match.

    Good luck


    • Replies to John Harvey>

      Comment by AdamH posted on

      John - apologies for slow reply but wanted to check with colleagues as to whether we have any plans to make more information available online to non business e-service users to enable citizens to track applications for example. The answer is No at present but we do appreciate the feedback so the e-door is never closed on such ideas.
      As far as my time management and leave are concerned that should work out ok as there’s a large team of very supportive colleagues behind our online responses. And that sunshine is very inviting

  2. Comment by Catherine Evans posted on

    I am left despondent that there is no mention of the existing backlog of cases, and the current unacceptable time to deal with applications. Even if there is not that much you can do at present some acknowledgement would be welcome. Promising that things will be marvellous in the "near future" does not cut it with hard pressed conveyancers, and worried clients.

  3. Comment by Becky posted on

    I have a deed of variation that was submitted through on Thursday last week From freetricity and receipt was confirmed along with the expedite from LR. There has been a significant delay in getting this signed with the solar panel company due to the current pandemic and I have had to move to temporary accommodation as the buyer of my property was threatening to pull out so I proceeded with the sale of mine. Can you please advise as to how long it is likely to take to register the deed of variation for solar panels as I would like to have some idea as to how long the purchase of our new house is likely to take ? This is the only thing we are now waiting on. Any help and advise you can give would be very welcome.

    • Replies to Becky>

      Comment by AdamH posted on

      Becky - if it’s been expedited then it’s normally considered within 5 working days. Everything then hangs on it being in order of course

  4. Comment by Caireen posted on

    I submitted a TR-1 form with confirmation of delivery on 22nd May 2020. I have not received a confirmation of receipt nor have any way of checking the progress of my application as we did not use a conveyancer. What can I do to obtain an update?

  5. Comment by HarryL posted on

    Thanks to all at the Land Registry for all your hard work - I have a question on timescales, having read the link at that says there is a significant delay on "register to update applications".
    Last year a group of us collectively enfranchised our leasehold property in mid-January 2020, and all submitted our updated leases to register the new details on our leasehold titles (999 years, peppercorn ground rent etc). 6 months later, this still has not yet happened, owing to the coronavirus backlog (understandably) but our conveyancer will not enquire as to progress or consider expediting unless we pay him £250. As direct users are unable to enquire directly, is there any chance of understanding current typical timescales for such matters, or displaying them online somewhere. I would like to avoid paying a large sum for expediting now (after 6 months of waiting) if it is just about to happen anyway. Thank you in advance.

    • Replies to HarryL>

      Comment by AdamH posted on

      HarryL - thank you for your kind words.
      We do display average timescales online via our service standards on GOV.UK
      However these only cover pre Covid 19 averages and as you will appreciate an average is only that so indicative only. It will however give you some understanding as to why a new lease would on average take several months to register.
      The reality is that a new lease or any other register update/create is protected from the day it is submitted. You may then have to wait until it is registered but you are still protected. We would not expedite it simply because it was several months old but if there was an urgency such as a confirmed sale and purchase or expiring mortgage offer then we could consider it.
      So if you and your fellow enfranchisers have no such urgency then it is very much a case of holding on and waiting until the new leases are registered. Hopefully you can all bear with us a bit longer

      • Replies to AdamH>

        Comment by HarryL posted on

        Hi Adam - thank you for such a swift reply. I did see the service standards, but even pre-COVID it says for a register update it's a 5 day target (para 1.3) and a 13 day performance (para 2), but as we are now at approx 120 working days, any idea as to current average would really help. I ask as I am in process of selling the flat, and although the purchaser is not yet confirmed, I would hate for the process to be held up. I guess that without the HMLR reference (which only my former conveyancer holds) I cannot even ask myself for an expedition?

        • Replies to HarryL>

          Comment by AdamH posted on

          Harry L - I took your comment to indicate that you’ve extended your leases. If so then by doing so you have surrendered the original lease and created a new one based but for a longer term. That’s a new lease
          We won’t expedite it until the buyer is confirmed so continue to market it and if and when you reach the memorandum of sale stage your conveyancer/you can use that to support any request.

  6. Comment by HarryL posted on

    Adam - of course, you're absolutely right - that makes more sense. Thank you for your advice, and i shall sit tight until I need to. All the best. Harry

  7. Comment by M posted on

    Hi Adam. I hope you are well? Sorry to ask again, but is there any update on 9 Cragg Lane, Denholme, BD13 4HP? I've lost where I put my original post. I'm hoping you should have received the postal registration by now. Thanks

  8. Comment by M posted on

    Thanks again Adam. We've had notification that the expedited. I know that it's so difficult to confirm this, but from recent applications that have been expedited, is it still quite a wait? We are in a big chain, and our purchase is holding it all up. So feeling a bit responsible/anxious/worried. Thanks

    • Replies to M>

      Comment by AdamH posted on

      M - understood. It was expedited today so I’d expect it to be considered ASAP. That could be within 48hrs but first registrations, which this is, are the type of application affected by Covid 19 as they rely on paper deeds/access to offices for example.
      It’s impossible to be definitive therefore re timescales but it shouldn’t be ‘quite a wait’ to use your own words.
      What really matters is whether the application is complete/sufficient. If it is then registration often happens at same time as consideration. So at this stage I’d suggest stay positive, try not to stress too much over the weekend and let’s see where things are on Tues/Wed for example.
      Not ideal I know but it’s the very best we can do in the circumstances and I hope that helps and reassures in equal measure

      • Replies to AdamH>

        Comment by M posted on

        That's brilliant and really does help. I will do as you say and try and not stress about it over the weekend. Fingers crossed that the application is sufficient enough at this stage.

        You've been amazing Adam, thanks so much for all your help so far. It really has been so reassuring and helpful to have someone reply so quickly and with such up to date information. Thank you so much. Great work!

  9. Comment by M posted on

    Morning Adam. I hope you are well? Following on from last week's chat, is there been any progression with 9 Cragg Lane, Thornton? Thanks

    • Replies to M>

      Comment by AdamH posted on

      M - it’s been referred to one of our lawyers and it’s now back with the caseworker. Looks like we will be writing to the conveyancer shortly for more details. So you’ll need to still bear with us and them before it can be completed

  10. Comment by M posted on

    Oky doke . Thanks for the update.


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