Looks can be deceiving, and this applies to properties too.
For example, a beautiful stone house could be hundreds of years old but on the inside it's been ripped out and renovated and looks brand new. Alternatively, if a home hasn't been looked after and maintained, it may look older than its true age.
If you're not sure how old your house is, there are ways you can find out.
HM Land Registry
HM Land Registry relatively often receive requests from home owners asking how old their house is. This information is needed for building insurance so it can be essential that they find out the correct year it was built.
As suggested by their name, HM Land Registry only keep documentation on land ownership, not when property was built on this land. However, if you purchased your property as a new build from the developer, you can take a look at the age of the first transfer by the developer to get an approximate age of the home.
If you didn't buy your property new from the building developer, HM Land Registry won't be able to help. But don't panic! Keep reading.
I didn't buy my house brand new, how can I find out its age?
When a vendor is selling their house, they have to fill out a seller's property information form which may contain the age of the property in question. If you're currently in the process of buying a house, you can ask the seller or estate agent for this information.
Alternatively, if you have a mortgage on the property, your survey may well state the age of the house.
Other routes are checking with your council when planning permission was granted, or speaking to your neighbours about when their properties were built, especially if they were built at the same time.
My home is quite old, what's the best way for me to find when it was built?
If you're strugging to find the age of your home because it's old, such as built in the 1800s, there are other methods you could try.
1862 Act register
HM Land Registry provides you access to the 1862 Act register, which contains historical information about properties and people. Here, there are recordings of 2,000 properties.
Do you have anywhere local which holds archives or historical information? You can start by checking with your parish records, county record offices, or even your local library.
Census returns were made every ten years between 1841 and 1911, and counted where everyone was at a particular time. You may find mention of your address in here. If so, have a dig for the first mention of it.
Take a look at the style and features of your home, as this can be a good giveaway of the age. For example, they may have only built your type of roof between a particular period of time.
Take a look online to see if you can get in contact with a local history society, they may be able to help you out!
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