Who owns that?
November 9, 2005 12:26 PM   Subscribe

Two business premises -- a bar and a bank -- recently closed down in my area of London, and it is rumoured that both have been sold. Is there anywhere they would be required to register this that I could check to find out who the new owners are, if there are any?

If it helps, both buildings seem likely to change use rather than re-opening as a bar and a bank. Free is, of course, the best price, but I'm willing to pay a few pounds to find this out.
posted by reklaw to Work & Money (6 answers total)
posted by raedyn at 1:32 PM on November 9, 2005

If a property can be identified by a single postal address, (for example, 23 Coniston Drive, Kerwick) you can use our Land Register Online website which enables members of the public to download copies of title information for a £2.00 fee, payable by credit or debit card.
posted by raedyn at 1:34 PM on November 9, 2005

If there's a change of use there may have to be a planning application. Search with the planning & building control dept of the local council and if an application has been made (you'll possibly spot the notices on lamposts in the area) you'll be able to see who made it.
posted by patricio at 2:26 PM on November 9, 2005

Land registry is a good tip, but bear in mind lots of valuable commercial property, particularly in central London, will be owned by property companies, pension funds etc - and only rented out. Commercial leases probably won't appear on the register - hence the user could change without the owner changing on the register.
posted by prentiz at 4:55 PM on November 9, 2005

Yeah, you won't be able to find a lessee easily, until they start getting services -- and then there'll probably be a sign, and activity.

I'd start networking with other businesses in the neighborhood. Chances are somebody knows somebody at the property manager who ... etc.

Since you're willing to pay money, this sounds like a serious interest. That should be something to trade on, and if your interest is serious, local networking can only help in the long run.
posted by dhartung at 10:05 PM on November 9, 2005

Do check with the Land Registry -- all leases of over seven years are registrable so it's quite possible that the end user will be on the title.
posted by patricio at 1:46 AM on November 10, 2005

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