Chancel Search

A Chancel Search, is one of the main conveyancing property searches your lender requires you to pay for if you’re buying a property. The report reveals the liability of a property owner to contribute to the cost of repair of the chancel (or steeple) of a church. It dates back to medieval times when the local parish church owned large tracts of land. This search provides home buyers with the reassurance they will not unwillingly inherit a financial responsibility towards the local parish church building. This sometimes happens if a property sits on land that was once owned by the rectory. If it is discovered that the property might be affected, then it allows the buyer to take the relevant action (such as take out an insurance policy).

Pinpoint Chancel Search

The PinPoint Chancel Report is a Chancel Repair Liability Screening Report, designed to identify historical parishes where a continuing Chancel liability exists. It combines data sourced from historical parishes, national archives, tithe district and enclosures records, with expert interpretation and analysis from geographic historians and academics from the University of Portsmouth.

Expert knowledge and analysis • Wealth of data, including access to records over 200 years old • Built with geographic historians to interpret and assess Chancel Repair risk • Queries handled by industry professionals, in partnership with specialist academics Quality assured • Includes £3 million Aviva insurance policy with in perpetuity cover • Expert team delivers insightful opinion and guidance on all results • Fast and reliable service from Chancel experts

With searches available for both residential and commercial property transactions, the PinPoint Chancel Report has been developed to provide an accurate analysis of any potential Chancel liabilities. If a risk is identified or further analysis of the findings is required, PinPoint works in partnership with specialist University academics to provide a definitive response. For added protection PinPoint Chancel includes £3 million warranty from Aviva that provides In Perpetuity cover to protect owners and lenders against Historical Data that is NOT held at the National Archive

Key Features Why this matters
Includes local land charges (general finance, specific financial, planning, miscellaneous, fenland way maintenance, land compensation, new towns, civil aviation and opencast coal). Provides the buyer with complete information on local land charges.
Reveals listed building and conservation areas. Informs client of any potential obstacles.
Includes information on planning designations and proposals, including new roads; building developments nearby; highways schemes; road maintenance; public rights of way. Gives client full information on all relevant planning and road developments nearby.
Identifies contaminated land and radon affected areas. Gives client full information on any potential hazards.

CLS Chancel Check

With around 5,200 pre-Reformation churches across England and Wales, chancel repairs potentially affect up to 500,000 homes. That makes instructing a Chancel Repair Search essential for those buying residential or commercial property.

The historic nature of chancel repairs means many liabilities are not recorded on title deeds, but they remain legally enforceable. A Chancel Check report will reveal whether a property is within a parish where a potential chancel repair liability exists.

When there is no risk of any liability for chancel repairs, a Certificate will be issued to confirm this.

When the report records that a property is located within a parish and potentially liable for chancel repair payments, Searches UK offers chancel liability insurance that will protect a home buyer against future costs.

Key Features Why this matters
Report return within 24 hours. Clients can be assured of a fast response when a Chancel Check is commissioned.
Property will be screened using National Archives and County Records Office data. The most up-to-date data is utilised to return the fullest information.
A Report is returned where a searched address is discovered to be within a parish that can claim for chancel repair costs and a potential liability exists. Home buyers can purchase insurance to protect themselves against any future risk of chancel repair costs.
A Certificate is returned where a searched address is discovered to be within a parish that cannot claim for chancel repair costs and where no potential liability exists. Home buyers can purchase a property secure in the knowledge they will not be pursued for chancel repair costs in the future.
Where a chancel repair risk is revealed, Searches UK offers optional chancel repair insurance. Home buyers have a quick and cost-effective solution that will allow their purchase transaction to go ahead.

No Search Chancel Insurance

The Chancel Liability indemnity policy has been specifically designed for the situation where the homeowner is prepared to purchase a single residential and/or commercial property without a full search or enquiries being carried out to check whether or not owners of the property may be liable to contribute to or pay for the cost of repair to a church chancel. The owner of the property must not be aware of any liability to repair the chancel and there must not be any reference to such liability in the property’s title deeds or Land Registry entries. Please contact us for any queries or sample reports you require.