Community right to buy abandoned, neglected or detrimental land: application form

Application form and guidance for community bodies wishing to apply to exercise the right to buy land under community right to buy abandoned, neglected or detrimental land.

Before applying

• You must ensure that your community body itself is compliant with the Act. This should be the first step that your group does, as you need to be compliant in order to make an offer for the land that can be considered as part of your application, as well as conducting the ballot. You can send your governing document to the Community Land Team and we will work with you to ensure that the document is Act compliant. Once compliant, Scottish Ministers will provide to the community body a compliance letter which allows them to apply, once you have completed all the pre-application steps noted below.

• Your company should have a Certificate of Incorporation (or equivalent).

• Your Scottish Ministers approved community body should have tried and failed to buy the land from the current landowner/s. As noted above, you must have been a compliant Part 3A community body when you tried to buy the land.

• If the land is being considered detrimental (as opposed to abandoned or neglected), you should have contacted the relevant regulator (if there is one) to deal with the issue i.e. to resolve any detrimental effects. Again, you must have been a compliant Part 3A community body when you contacted the regulator.

• You should have conducted a ballot of the eligible voters in your whole community (within the 6 months preceding your application and once you’ve had confirmation that you are a compliant Part 3A community body) to demonstrate support for your actions and sent the result to the Community Land Team.  For the purpose of publicising the ballot result, we have produced – Schedule 3. We have also produced a form for the purpose of notifying Scottish Ministers of the ballot result – Schedule 4.  The ballot result can be submitted along with your application if the result was obtained within 3 weeks of submitting your final application.

You cannot submit an application under ANDL until you have carried out all the pre-application criteria.

Application process

Your community body must forward the final application and supporting documents to Scottish Ministers and, at the same time, it must send a copy of the application to the landowner and any heritable creditors/interested parties (if any). A temporary prohibition is placed on the landowner and creditor (if any), once the application is recorded on the Register of Community Interest in Buying Land, preventing them from taking steps to transfer or dispose of the land until Scottish Ministers fully consider the application. 

On receipt of a compliant application, Scottish Ministers will write to the landowner etc. and allow them 60 days to provide any comments on the application to Scottish Ministers and, if comments are submitted, the community body are given a further 60 days to provide any further views on these comments. Ministers may seek representations from other interested parties that they consider relevant in determining the case. Ministers will then consider all evidence submitted and a decision will be made. Please note that a total period of 180 days from when we receive the application, must pass before Ministers can make a decision. This includes the period for the landowner and the community body to provide Ministers with comments. Ministers will consider all comments submitted when deciding whether to approve or reject the application.

If the application is approved, the process will then progress to the purchase stage.


If the application to exercise the right to buy land is approved by Ministers, we will provide relevant guidance to the community body in relation to the purchase process. As part of this, Ministers will appoint and pay for an independent valuer to determine the market value of the land.

Once the community body have been informed of the value of the land, they will have three weeks to advise Ministers if they wish to proceed with the purchase.

The community body will have six months from the date that Ministers approved the application to exercise the right to buy the land (or longer if agreed between both parties) to conclude the transfer of the land.


Any person, including the owner, who has incurred costs in complying with the Act, is entitled to compensation. If the application is refused by Scottish  Ministers, then any claim for compensation is made against Scottish Ministers. In all other circumstances, the claim is made against the community body. Any such claims must be fully vouched and must be made within 90 days of the last action for which compensation is claimed.

If a compensation claim is made against the community body, you may, under certain circumstances, be entitled to a grant from Scottish Ministers to pay that claim. An application for grant towards liability for compensation can be found within Schedule 5.

The application form and associated guidance, together with schedules 3, 4 and 5, are linked from this page.

Register of applications by community bodies to buy land

Applications which are received for this right to buy will be available to view, free of charge, on the Register of Applications by Community Bodies to Buy Land, which is held by Registers of Scotland

Completed application forms, including maps and supporting documentation, should be sent to:

Community Land Team
Q Spur
Saughton House
Broomhouse Drive
EH11 3XD

Or email


Phone: 0300 244 9822


Community Land Team
Saughton House
Broomhouse Drive
EH11 3XD

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