Common repairs in Scotland?

Common repairs in Scotland?

10:54 AM, 26th July 2021, About 2 years ago 2

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I have an HMO property in a block of flats in Scotland. The block is owned by 6 owners.

The owners do not co-operate or share the costs for common repairs.

Does anyone have any experience of paying for common repairs in Scotland when the other owners do not want to pay?

Many thanks


Editor Note: From >>

All owners in a tenement are usually jointly responsible for keeping common areas in good condition, but this isn’t always the case.

To find out what areas you’re responsible for, you can check your title deeds. These should tell you:

  • about your responsibilities for maintaining common areas
  • how decisions about maintaining common areas should be taken
  • how maintenance costs should be split between owners
  • how to pay these costs

These conditions are known as ‘real burdens’. They’re part of the terms of owning your flat, and were agreed when you bought it.

If you can’t find your title deeds, you can get a copy from the Registers of Scotland, the solicitor who did the conveyancing when you bought the flat, or your mortgage lender.


Most of your legal rights and responsibilities for common areas only count when ‘maintenance’ is being carried out.

Maintenance means:

  • repairs and replacement
  • cleaning
  • painting and other routine work
  • gardening
  • the day-to-day running of the tenement
  • the reinstatement of part of the tenement

Maintenance doesn’t mean:

  • alteration
  • demolition
  • making improvements (unless it’s part of maintenance work, like replacing a broken door with one with a better lock)
  • redecorating privately owned areas (unless they’re damaged during work on a common area)

Property factors

Sometimes a group of owners may decide to hire someone to take care of the maintenance and repair responsibilities for them.

These are called property factors (sometimes called property managers), and for a fee they can:

  • arrange for annual inspections of the tenement and deal with any problems the inspection reveals
  • give price estimates for one-off maintenance and repair work, ask if the owners want to go ahead with it, then set it up if they do
  • other services, like organising common insurance for the building or contracts for lifts, boilers and gardeners

Find out more information on property factors.

Sometimes your title deeds will lay nothing down or have gaps which could lead to some problems when trying to make decisions with other owners in your tenement.

For example, your title deeds might not:

  • explain how decisions should be made
  • describe all the common areas
  • give a share of costs that adds up to 100%

If this is the case, you and the other owners can revert to the ‘Tenement Management Scheme’ found at Schedule 1 of the Tenement (Scotland) Act 2004. This fills in the gaps in title deeds and helps make flat owners’ responsibilities more clear.

The Tenement Management Scheme:

  • explains what counts as maintenance
  • lists the ‘scheme property’ (the parts of the tenement every flat owner should maintain)
  • tells you how to come to agreements about maintenance (known as ‘scheme decisions’)
  • tells you how maintenance costs are shared between owners

Scheme decisions

If you and the other owners can’t decide on if and how you should carry out certain maintenance, the Tenement Management Scheme will explain how you should come to an agreement.

You and the other owners may make scheme decisions on:

  • carrying out maintenance
  • arranging maintenance inspections
  • hiring or dismissing a property manager
  • giving a property manager authority to carry out inspections and maintenance
  • arranging common insurance
  • deciding that an owner doesn’t have to pay their share of maintenance cost
  • sorting out emergency work
  • installing a door-entry system
  • changing or cancelling any other decision made in the past

These decisions will usually be made with a voting system, with each property representing one vote. The Tenement Management Scheme will give details on how this should be carried out.

Sharing the cost

Once a scheme decision is made, owners become responsible for the cost of carrying out any maintenance or repairs needed.

Your title deeds usually tell you how the costs should be shared between owners, but if there is nothing laid down or there are gaps you may use the Tenement Management Scheme.

Under a Tenement Management Scheme, all owners pay an equal share of the costs of maintenance and repairs, except:

  • when the work involves a part of the tenement that isn’t used by everyone (in which case only the owners of the flats involved should pay)
  • when the floor area of the biggest flat is more than one-and-a-half times the floor area of the smaller flat (in which case repair costs should be split so the owner of the larger flat pays more)

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Neil Patterson

10:59 AM, 26th July 2021, About 2 years ago

I hope my notes from MyGov.Scot above in the article assist 🙂


11:46 AM, 26th July 2021, About 2 years ago

The guidelines are well and good. But none of the owners is willing to participate or respond to my mail. I have followed the procedure as recommended by the Local Council.
1. Got Two estimates.
2. Sent the estimates and survey reports from the builders to all the owners.
3. Opened a separate account to deposit the money.
4. Informed the owners that the repairs are urgent needed to reduce further damage to the building
5. Sent the conditions in the title deeds who is responsible for common repairs.
I live on the topmost flat and it is my flat that is damaged all other owners live in the flats below mine and their flats are not affected by water damage.
According to the council, the majority of the owners should consent to repairs. They do not tell if the majority of the owners do not consent to what an owner should do.

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