If you meet Phil and Kirstie!

Many people are avid watchers of Location, Location, Location, Homes under the Hammer and similar property programs. Scottish viewers will be puzzled by references to "leasehold" and "landlord" when there are discussions of the purchase of flats in England.

Although the end result is pretty similar, the legal basis of Scottish law relating to flats is quite different from that of English law. Most flats in England are held on a leasehold title where somebody nominally owns the building (the landlord) and each of the owners of the flats actually have a long-term lease (generally more than 90 years). There are numerous pieces of legislation which protect these leasehold owners so that their right is much more similar to absolute ownership.

Ownership of flats in Scotland is originally based upon Roman law which accommodates much more easily the concept of ownership of part of a larger property (which is not so easily handled within English law). And when you next hear Phil and Kirstie make reference to a "management company" in relation to a flat, this is broadly equivalent of a factor in Scotland.

Although there are substantial legal differences between Scotland and England, it is also fair to say that there are practical differences in the approach to managing flats and common repairs in Scotland and you might be interested in looking at our popular website article on Understanding Repairs when buying and selling a Scottish flat.

Last week in the third part of our series on Brexit and the Scottish Property Market we discussed the impact of property taxes and how they distort the property market in Scotland. Interestingly, this week the Courier newspaper website carried an article about the negative impact of the Scottish Stamp duty (LBTT) on the middle and upper portions of the property market. While, the article did not explore the matter in the same detail as we had, it reinforces the messages that we have been conveying about the unintended consequences of Government and other activity on the property market.