Updating property records are an essential part of administering the estate when someone dies, and necessary before the property can be passed down or sold to a third party. It’s also often not obvious how to update this information, so you can use the following to guide you through the process.

The action you will need to take depends greatly on whether the deceased was the sole or joint owner of the property. If you’re not sure, you should start by checking the property records. You don’t necessarily need property deeds to find this information, you can instead locate information about a property on the Land Registry.

 

What to do when a joint owner dies

When a joint owner dies, the process is relatively simple – you just need to inform the Land Registry of the death. You should complete a ‘Deceased joint proprietor’ form on the government’s website and then send the form to the Land Registry, with an official copy of the death certificate. The other joint owner then becomes the sole owner of the property.

 

What to do when a sole owner dies

When a sole owner dies, the property is ordinarily transferred to either the person inheriting the property, or to a third party. The process of updating property records can become more complicated when a sole owner dies, so this is usually undertaken by a probate solicitor. If you wish to complete the forms yourself, you might wish to seek legal advice to guide you through the process.

If the property is being inherited, otherwise known as being transferred to a beneficiary, you will need to download and fill in two forms:

  • ‘Change the register’, sometimes referred to as form AP1. You can find this form on gov.uk.
  • ‘Whole of registered title: assent’, sometimes referred to as form AS1. You can find this form on gov.uk.

You will also need to send

  • The original or an official copy of the grant of probate or letters of administration
  • The Stamp Duty Land Tax certificate or self-certificate for the property, if appropriate. This certificate can be found on gov.uk.

Alongside this paperwork, you will also need to enclose the correct fee. This fee varies depending on the kind of property, and can be calculated on the land registry section of gov.uk. Send these forms to:

Land Registry Citizen Centre

PO Box 74

Gloucester

GL14 9 BB

If you intend to sell the house to a third party, you will need to transfer the ownership of the property, and also provide the buyer with an official copy of the probate or letters of administration.

 

Need a hand?

Beyond offers a fixed-fee estate administration service that includes help with transferring, selling and insuring property in the estate. To get a fixed quote in minutes, call us for free on 0800 054 9896.

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