Jan Boothroyd, CEO at Land Data, explains how the National Land Information Service (NLIS) has modernised the conveyancing search market now that every local authority in England and Wales is connected to NLIS. He highlights the importance and variety of conveyancing searches such as drainage, water and coal mining searches in addition to the usual Land Registry searches. NLIS electronic searches also reduce risk because the data quality of the searches can be relied upon to be current and complete. Interestingly local authorities are insured and all replies are covered for many years, providing the purchaser with an assurance that there will be no nasty search related surprises after the exchange of contract.
Since the NLIS went live in 2001 over 20 million searches have been processed. Land Data regulates the activities of the NLIS hub and channels against their contracts in order to protect the users, clients and the data providers in a secure, robust and fully supported environment. Using NLIS, conveyancers can demonstrate solid auditing and process control, which is another attractive benefit for lenders.