Tenements and other flatted buildings

This guidance covers our approach to tenements and flatted buildings on the cadastral map.

Individual flats within a tenement or flatted building are a limited exception to the 'no registration without mapping' rule.

We represent a tenement and all the flats within it as a single cadastral unit. Individual flats within the building each have their own title sheet and title number. We can describe a flat verbally or by reference to supplementary data to the title sheet.

Before you apply to register a flat in a tenement, you can check if we already hold an extent for the building. A plans report from our reports service will provide sufficient information. If we already hold an acceptable extent, you don’t need to define tenement steading in your application.

If we don’t hold an extent for the tenement steading, you’ll need to sufficiently describe it in your application for us to delineate it on the cadastral map.

Introduction

No registration without mapping is a key principle underpinning the 2012 Act. However, the Act enables the keeper to apply a limited exception to the principle for tenements and other flatted buildings, because of the difficulties associated with mapping vertical boundaries.

The exception is found in section 16 and, in large part, allows the keeper to replicate a style of mapping commonly used for such buildings under the 1979 Act. Section 16 allows the keeper to represent the building (including land pertaining to it) and all the registered flats within it as a single cadastral unit. In essence, a block of flats is represented by a single red edge on the cadastral map, which is referred to by the keeper as the tenement steading.

Section 16 applies both to tenements as defined in the Tenements (Scotland) Act 2004, and to other subdivided buildings comprising at least two flats in separate ownership (or designed to be so) and separated vertically. For example, this might include a Victorian villa which has been split into two but would not include a row of terraced houses. For simplicity, where the guidance refers to tenements, that is also intended to cover other flatted buildings mapped in accordance with section 16.

Section 16 preserves the possibility of mapping flats individually using vertical boundaries in future, but the keeper's current policy is to use the exception in that section.

What registration of a flat in a tenement will look like

Each flat will have a separate title sheet and number, the property section of which will describe the flat by reference to the cadastral unit number of the tenement steading. For example:

"Subjects, part of Cadastral Unit GLA12345 edged red on the Cadastral Map, being the westmost dwellinghouse on the first floor above the ground floor of the Tenement 48 CRAIGPARK, GLASGOW G31 2LX."

For the first flat registered in a tenement since designated day, the title number and cadastral unit number will be the same. Subsequent flats registered will each have a different title number.

For flats with exclusive or common pertinents - such as areas of garden ground - these will not be mapped on the cadastral map. Instead, they will be shown on a separate plan as supplementary data to the title sheet for the flat or flats to which they belong.

Defining the tenement steading

Where the keeper already holds an extent for the tenement steading

In cases where the keeper already holds sufficient information on the extent of the tenement steading, the applicant does not need to supply any further information on that. They should simply ensure that their application/deed is clear about the location of the flat with which they are dealing and the location of any exclusive ground pertaining to that flat.

The keeper will already hold an extent for the tenement steading in the following cases:

  • where there has been at least one flat from the tenement registered under the 2012 Act
  • where a previous 1979 Act registration of a flat within a single tenement has been mapped using the tenement steading  approach. In these cases the property section in the title sheet of the flat will describe the property as falling "within the land edged red" and the red edge consists of a single tenement block.
  • a flat is being transferred from a registered title and the registered title comprises only the tenement from which the flat is being transferred.

A plans report (of any level) from the keeper will disclose whether the keeper already holds an extent for the tenement steading.

Where the keeper does not hold an extent for the steading

In such cases, the application must provide sufficient information for the keeper to create a cadastral unit to represent the tenement. As a minimum, the keeper will require a description of the location of the flat within the tenement and a plan or full bounding description of any common or exclusive areas of ground lying outwith the footprint of the building itself. That may include, for example, a shared back court and an exclusive car parking space. Sometimes that will be set out in the breakaway/foundation deed for the flat, and sometimes it will be by reference to a deed of conditions.

For the avoidance of doubt, there is no requirement to provide information on areas owned exclusively by other flats within the building. However, if the full extent of the tenement steading is known to the applicant (i.e. all land pertaining to the building including land exclusive to other flats) then this may be submitted with the application.

The obligation on applicants registering flats is therefore the same as the obligation on applicants for any other area of ground. 

Find further information on the quality of the plan/bounding description required in our deed plan criteria guidance.

There may be some cases where the exact extent of common ground pertaining to the tenement is unclear. In such cases, it is a matter for the applicant to consider what is supported by the prior titles and possession, and to produce a fresh plan annexed to the deed submitted for registration if required. If the applicant is unable to ascertain the full extent of such areas, they may decide to provide a plan which includes only ground they are certain is supported by the titles or a plan which is limited to the footprint of the building. In such cases, the title sheet and cadastral map will follow the new plan and restrict the extent of the property to the footprint of the building, even where that might represent a smaller area than the prior titles are capable of encompassing.

New buildings

New tenement and flatted buildings are those in which none of the individual flats have been registered in the land register or recorded in the sasine register before the designated day (8 December 2014). In new buildings, it is likely that the developer or owner of the whole building is a party to the deed being registered. It is also likely, at that stage, that the developer will be aware of how the land pertaining to the building is to be divided (ie the split of common and exclusive property between the flats). Where that is the case, the application for registration of the first flat should contain sufficient information for the keeper to map the full steading extent. This will ensure that the subsequent registration process is straightforward, and the developer - as granter - does not need to provide the same information continually for each sale from the building.

Developers may wish to consider using development plan approval in such cases, as that can provide certainty over the registration process from a very early stage. 

View further information on development plan approval.

The 25 metre rule

For these new tenement buildings only, the 25 metre rule applies. Where land pertaining to the building lies or extends further than 25 metres from the building, the mapping rules in section 16 do not apply to that land. Accordingly, a separate cadastral unit must be created for that area in the same way as any other plot of land.

FAQs

The 2012 Act allows the Keeper to broadly continue with her current mapping practice of providing a red edge to define the extent of the tenement building and all land pertaining to it, this is known as the tenement steading. The tenement steading extent described in the deeds will become the extent of the cadastral unit. There will be a single cadastral unit for the tenement and all flats within it, rather than separate cadastral units for each flat.

Although the cadastral unit for each flatted property is the whole tenement, each flat will have a separate title number and title sheet.

The description for the flat in the property section will narrate that the subjects form part of the cadastral unit. See example below.

Excerpt of the cadastral map showing cadastral unit for tenement steading only.

Tenement steading example

Property description for flatted property within the above tenement cadastral unit:

Subjects part of Cadastral Unit GLA12345 edged red on the Cadastral Map, being the westmost dwelling house on the first floor above the ground floor of the Tenement 48 CRAIGPARK, GLASGOW G31 2LX.

In terms of section 16(1) of the 2012 Act the Keeper can represent the tenement building and all the registered flats within it as a single cadastral unit. Therefore, where the deed plan defines the extent of the flatted property, exclusive pertinents, or shared areas, these will not be reflected on the cadastral map.

Additional information including the footprint of the individual flat or relating to shared and other exclusive rights pertaining to the individual flats, such as bin stores or a common drying green, is considered supplementary data and as such will not be shown on the cadastral map, but will be included as supplementary data to the title sheet (in the form of a plan) for the individual flat, to clarify the information in the title sheet for that flat.

Supplementary data is additional geospatial data or other information that may be included in individual title sheets to enhance or clarify the detail in that title sheet. As supplementary data is used to clarify information in the title sheet, where this includes additional geospatial data, it is not shown on the cadastral map. For example, the extent of a flatted property within a tenement does not require to be shown on the cadastral map as it is within the building defined on the cadastral map.

The Keeper may provide spatial supplementary data to the title sheet by (a) delineating the additional information on a plan using the base map to provide the underlying detail or (b) incorporating into the Property Section by reference the relevant deed and plan held in the archive record, in order to support and reflect the terms of the conveyancing.

As this data supplements the information in the title sheet, it forms part of the title sheet only; it does not form part of the cadastral map. An extract of the title sheet would include extracts of any supplementary data associated with that title, even where the supplementary data is in the form of a plan produced by the Keeper.

If the description of a tenement property in the title deeds is insufficient to enable the Keeper to identify and define the extent of the tenement, the application must be rejected as it does not comply with the conditions of registration.  An application must provide sufficient information for the keeper to create a cadastral unit to represent the tenement.  As a minimum the keeper will require a description of the location of the flat within the tenement and a plan or full bounding description of any common or exclusive areas of ground lying outwith the footprint of the building itself. That may include, for example, a shared back court and an exclusive car parking space. Sometimes that will be set out in the breakaway/foundation deed for the flat and sometimes it will be by reference to a deed of conditions.   For the avoidance of doubt there is no requirement to provide information on areas owned exclusively by other flats within the building. However, if the full extent of the tenement steading is known to the applicant (i.e. all land pertaining to the building including land exclusive to other flats) then this may be submitted with the application.

Provided the verbal description of the pertinent gives sufficient information to allow the pertinent to be uniquely identified in relation to all other similar pertinents within the tenement, then a plan is not required. For example, if there is only one drying green within the tenement, a verbal reference to “the drying green” is sufficient. However, if there are four coal cellars within the tenement, a unique description is required; for example, “the eastmost coal cellar of the row of four coal cellars”. The use of unchanging compass directions, for example, northmost, is a well-established conveyancing practice.

Provided the description of the flatted property gives sufficient information to allow the flat location to be accurately identified in relation to the other flats within the tenement, such as floor level, compass direction and flat number, then a plan is not required. The use of unchanging compass directions, for example, northmost, is a well-established conveyancing practice.

The 25 metre rule only applies to tenements and other flatted buildings. It applies to those areas of land that extend more than, or are located further than, 25 metres from the tenement or flatted building. Section 16(3) excludes such areas of land from the tenement cadastral unit so a separate cadastral unit and title sheet is required for this area. For example, if a flat within a tenement, for which the Keeper can establish the steading extent from the title deeds, has a pro indiviso share in a drying green, which extends or lies more than 25 metres from the tenement building, the drying green must form a separate cadastral unit from the tenement cadastral unit. As the drying green is owned in common by the other proprietors of the tenement it will be designated a shared plot title sheet.

If the furthest boundary of the drying green is less than 25 metres from the tenement building, it will of course, be included within the extent of the tenement cadastral unit.

Common areas within the cadastral unit for the tenement are pertinents of that unit and, as such, will not be registered separately.

The 25 metre rule does not apply to exclusive pertinents such as garden ground or bin stores that are in the ownership of an individual flat.

Under the transitional provisions in schedule 4, the 25 metre rule does not apply to tenements or flatted buildings where a prior title from the building is recorded in the Sasine Register or registered in the Land Register before the designated day.