Lochaber Highland Estates
Your guide to buying a small estate
Since the start of Lochaber Highland Estates we have seen a few other companies springing up, attempting to sell a similar product. To help prospective purchasers ensure their land sale is legal we have written this guide to Scots Law, and tried to detail the pitfalls you can fall into if you purchase from a less than legitimate seller.
Locating your plot:
It stands to reason that if you cannot locate your plot, you cannot own it…..as you don’t know where it is! However there are some sellers on eBay attempting to ‘sell’ land that is not identifiable. They will give you a plot number, for example 986, but neither they, (nor more importantly you), know where that is. Consequently you do not own the land, just have a certificate that you could have made yourself.
The law in Scotland for land sales states that your land must be identifiable with reference to the Ordnance Survey, which is Great Britain’s national mapping agency.
The land should be:
“sufficiently described to enable him to identify it by reference to the Ordnance Map”
You should check with the seller that this will be done before purchasing. The reference will be included in your pack and is the unique location of your square foot.
The title Laird means "landowner" so it is imperative that you ensure you REALLY are a landowner to be able to use this title. The only explanation for not including the OS reference is that the seller does not own the land. If they will not provide you with the OS reference you need to ask them why not.
The laws in Scotland do not require the registration of plots of land that are one square foot. You can read the legislation governing this in the Land Registration (Scotland) Act 1979. Copies of the act will be available at your local library.
Section 4 (1)(b) of the act states that the land will not need to be registered if it is:
“land which is a souvenir plot, that is a piece of land which, being of inconsiderable size or no practical utility, is unlikely to be wanted in isolation except for the sake of mere ownership or for sentimental reasons or commemorative purposes”
Instead, the sale of the land is governed by contract law. You should ensure that the contract you are given conforms to the Requirements of Writing (Scotland) Act 1995
We have noticed some individuals are offering land for sale whereby you do not get a contract drawn up by a lawyer, just a certificate. This does not comply with the above act…..and is often for sale at under $25...a clear case of “you get what you pay for”. Unfortunately this land sale will not be legal, and even more so as the plot is not identified (see above).
Visiting your land:
After you have purchased your plot of land, doubtless you will want to visit, take photographs, show your children, and hop up and down on your plot….. ;)
Lochaber Highland Estates is the only company that will provide a map of the land and driving directions to the site. Upon checking other auctions you will see they do not include directions to the land. So not only will you not legally own it, you won’t have a clue where it is anyway!
Completing the sale:
If you have any questions about the land sale please get in touch with us through eBay or our website
We have contact details on our website, so you can get in touch with us by e-mail, post or telephone. Hopefully you will have found this guide useful, if you have further questions please contact your lawyer or us; we are happy to explain any principles of the law and help you at every step of your purchase.
Thanks for reading,
Lochaber Highland Estates