What is an agreed boundary?
An agreed boundary is a boundary whose position has been agreed by neighbouring landowners in order to overcome any lack of clarity in the official description of that boundary.
With unregistered land the legally accepted description of the boundary is to be found in the parcels clause (or on the plan referred to in the parcels clause) of the relevant deed of conveyance. The law allows that, where the description of the boundary in the title deed (or conveyance deed) is unclear, neighbouring landowners may agree with each other the exact position of the boundary that separates their lands for the purpose of clarifying the description in the title deed. It must be emphasised that this agreement must be for the purpose of describing an existing boundary and must not be used as a means of transferring land (for which a deed of conveyance or a transfer deed must be drawn up by a solicitor or a registered conveyancer).
In the case of registered land the description of the boundary is to be found on Land Registry’s title plan, which shows only the general position of the boundary. For the legally accepted description of the boundary of unregistered land it is necessary to refer back to the pre-registration title deeds (in the case of many registered titles, the pre-registration deeds have been destroyed - and unless Land Registry has kept a copy, then the pre-registration deeds may be unavailable), more specifically to the parcels clause (or to the plan referred to in the parcels clause) of the relevant deed of conveyance. In some cases there will be a need for neighbouring owners of registered land to clarify the exact position of the boundary. This can be achieved in one of two ways:
- as an ‘Agreed Boundary’ (as described on the present page);
- as a ‘Determined Boundary’ (please refer to the page for Determined Boundary).
Land Registry is happy to note either an ‘agreed boundary’ or a ‘determined boundary’ on the register for each of the affected properties.
Jon Maynard Boundaries Ltd can accept joint instructions (ie. work on behalf of both parties, who each pay half of our fee) to:
- assist the parties in agreeing the position of the boundary,
- describe the agreed boundary unambiguously using an annotated, dimensioned plan,
- submit to Land Registry an application, supported by a plan signed by both parties, to note the boundary agreement on the register for each affected title (if the land is not registered then the boundary agreement must be kept with the other title deeds).
The process will involve our surveyor examining relevant documentary evidence (please refer to the page for Documentary Evidence) to satisfy himself:
- that he has correctly identified the proprietors (registered or otherwise) of the land,
- that the intention of the parties is to clarify the position of the boundary and not to effect a transfer of land.
A visit to the site will be necessary both to check the documentary evidence for the boundary against the physical features now present on the land and to take any survey measurements that will enable the proper description of the land.
The object of the exercise is:
- in the case of unregistered land to give clarity as to the position of a boundary that is poorly described in the title deeds;
- in the case of registered land to give a much more precise definition of the boundary than the ‘general boundary’ that is recorded by Land Registry.
Because the agreed boundary is noted on the register, its position will be binding on both parties and on anyone who later owns those titles. In the case of unregistered land, it will be necessary to keep the boundary agreement with the other title deeds.
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