Message from the keeper October 2015

Published: 29 October 2015

Earlier this month, I was delighted to announce that Deputy First Minister John Swinney has accepted a recommendation that will see the development of a comprehensive land and property information service for Scotland. The online service, named ScotLIS (Scotland's Land and Information System), will allow citizens, communities, professionals and business users to find out what they need to know about any piece of land or property in Scotland with a single enquiry. I will oversee the development of ScotLIS with the support of a number of partner organisations. The new system will be operational by October 2017.

Our most recent quarterly statistics reveal that, between July and September this year, some 28,000 registration applications were submitted for properties across Scotland. This is the highest volume of sales for any quarter since quarter one of 2008-09, and represents a rise of 6.5 per cent on the previous year. We've also seen a similar rise in the total value of sales across Scotland, which has risen 6 per cent on last year to £4.47 billion. By comparison, prices are largely unchanged, with the average house price sitting at £169,397, down just 0.5 per cent.

As part of our digital transformation programme, we have launched a new plan assistance service. This fully online resource replaces our title investigation service, and uses advanced geo-spatial software to translate information from your sasine deeds onto a plan suitable for registration in the land register. This is a service I'm really excited about, as it uses the expertise and searching knowledge of Registers of Scotland staff in a way that is tailored to meet our own deed plan criteria. Find out more about the service and how it can benefit you on the plan assistance service page of our website.

From 1 April 2016, the sasine register will be closed to standard securities. This means that property owners still on the sasine register who need to register a new standard security, for example if they re-mortgage, will need to voluntarily register on the land register. We anticipate this will bring around 5,000 properties onto the land register each year. Along with keeper-induced registration (KIR), this is one of the ways we will complete the land register over the coming years.

Our consultation on keeper-induced registration (KIR) is live on our website. Please submit a response to have your say on how we can use this particular mechanism, provided for under the 2012 Act, as the project progresses. The consultation runs till 8 January 2016.