A decade of the CON29 Drainage and Water Enquiry: clearly essential

The CON29DW is an essential part of the conveyancing process, as the official drainage and water search and 2012 marks its 10th anniversary.  The search provides potentially deal-breaking information on water and sewerage infrastructure for prospective property purchasers, protecting them and their advisors from unnecessary risk with a clear trail of responsibility back to the water companies.
It originated as two basic water and drainage questions in the Local Authority search, and has grown over the last ten years to its current form of 23 questions.  These questions cover crucial information with the potential to affect the value and title of the property.  This information includes build-over consents, adoption agreements, and services for which the property is connected.  
The standard questions are answered by all ten water and sewerage companies of England and Wales who deliver the CON29DW.  Whether the enquiry is purchased in Cumbria or Cornwall it consistently contains the same important areas of property information.
Since the launch of the CON29DW by the Law Society in 2002 the search has evolved in response to legislative changes, ensuring it remains accurate, relevant and up-to-date.  These have included the introduction of DG5 flooding information following the implementation of HIPs in 2007, and new informatives to cover the wholesale transfer of private sewers to the water companies in 2011.  
Significant investment in technology and training has delivered improved systems, data quality and service levels.  95% of all searches are now returned in just 3 days.  The development of new services such as the Commercial Drainage and Water enquiry, which is designed specifically for commercial property and land, also provides consumers and advisors with tailored levels of protection for commercial property transactions.  
Looking forward to the next decade, the industry will continue to support best practice in this specialist search sector.  
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