4 Ways to Discover When Was My House Built

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4 Ways to Discover When Was My House Built
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There are many reasons why you may wish to find out the age of your home. Some homeowners like to know if any modernisation will be required to the property, whereas others will be curious about the history of their home.

Whatever your reason, finding out the age of your home is often quite easy unless it’s a period home. Even if it was built before the first world war, there are plenty of ways to discover its age.

In this blog, we’ll look at what the best methods are, so you can get an accurate idea of your property’s age.

1. HM Land Registry

Using HM Land Registry is usually the most accurate way to know when your house was built. Their records are easily accessible online, but you may need to pay a small fee to get the information.

The Title Deed will show lots of information including previous owners, mortgages on the property and other important information such as rights of way. Crucially, it should have a corresponding date for all this information.

Here you can see when the house was first transferred to the first property owner. The Land Registry can be easily searched online, and it usually costs £3 to get your copy. It’s worth noting that Scotland has its own Land Registry, but it all works in the same way.

While the Land Registry is great for most homes, its information can be patchy for period homes, so you may need further investigative work.

2. Ask Your Seller or Their Estate Agent

The seller, their estate agent, and the conveyancer will all likely know when the home was built. The seller is an easy source of information but often you won’t get an exact year and instead, an estimate.

The estate agent may have their own copy of the land registry. You don’t need to own the property to look at the Title Deeds, so they may download one as a part of their process.

The conveyancer is responsible for transferring the legal title of a property. They’ll know the information if you can get hold of them, as long as it’s on the Title Deed.

3. Local Authority

If those methods don’t work out, or you want to avoid them, you can always contact your local authority. They should have a record of planning permission for the property, giving you a solid idea of when it was built.

Even if they don’t, there is a good chance that they have knowledge of the area and can advise on when homes were built in your area. This can be a good idea for much older properties that don’t have the full details on the land registry.

4. Neighbours with Similar Properties

It can also be a good idea to ask around. This may be worthwhile if you’ve been in the property for a while and can’t contact the previous seller or estate agent etc.

Your neighbour most likely had the same question as you did at one time or other. While this is a good idea, you need to be aware that their home may not have been built at the same time as yours. However, if you live in a suburb or estate, it almost certainly would have been.

If they don’t know, then you can ask local groups. Most areas will have their own Facebook group with amateur historians more than happy to tell you what they know. There may also be a local history society in your village or town that you can ask.

Why would you want to know when your house was built?

There are many reasons why knowing when your house was built is a good idea. Many people like to know the history of their home and are curious to know how long it has been standing. If you have a very old home, you’ll perhaps want to know what period it’s from.

However, there may be other reasons. For example, you may want to upgrade the property and need to know about its structural history. Knowing its age can give you key information, such as the type of insulation used, brickwork, and foundations.

Are there drawbacks of buying an old house?

There are many potential drawbacks to buying an old home, but many see them as heavily outweighed by the positives.

Old homes can be outdated in terms of their appliances and heating. For example, an old home may have an antiquated heating system that needs a complete overhaul at a considerable cost. In general, older homes also need more regular maintenance.

There can be other downsides too, such as older homes not being as energy efficient. While those points are all true, it can be special to live in a place with the type of history and charm that new properties simply don’t possess.

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