Researching Scottish House, Property & Land History

Tenement Royal Mile,Edinburgh

Tenement Royal Mile, Edinburgh

Discovering the history of a house, building or land in Scotland reveals a fascinating story of your property within a local community. Discover tales about people who lived there, uncover lost features, find where your home fits into the history of the local parish or what was there before it was built.

Scotland was the first country to establish a national system of registration for land and property 700 years ago. From the humble croft to the stately castle there is usually some record of its existence. Of course only a few could afford to own land and property. Estate records of major Scottish landowners often list their tenants, leases and rental charges.

Useful sources are:                                        

Tenancy lease

Tenancy Lease


  • Sasine Registers                                     
  • Census Returns                                     
  • Valuation Rolls
  • Maps and Plans
  • Street Directories
  • Gazetteers
  • Postcards and Photographs
  • Estate Records
  • Ordnance Survey Name Books
  • Tax Records
  • Notarial Protocol Books
  • Retours and Service of Heirs
  • Register of Great and Privy Seals
  • Historic Environment Scotland 
  • Registers of Scotland


Intrigued to know more? Then contact Chris Halliday, an experienced family historian to bring the history of your house or that of a Scottish ancestor to life. Whether a private or commercial building, a castle, tenement, farm, croft, church, school, lighthouse, railway station, hotel or pub, Chris will be able to uncover an interesting house history story.

Abandoned Croft

Abandoned Croft


Tracing Family Tree

tracing family tree

Using the numerous repositories throughout Scotland and visiting your ancestral locations Scotland's Genealogy will endeavour to answer your enquiry. Whether a single event, family tree or social history we will offer a bespoke service.

More on Family Trees

House and Land History


Scotland was the first country to establish a national system of registration for land and property 700 years ago.

More on House History

Apply for Coat of Arms

coat of arms

Petitions can be drawn up for eligible applicants to submit to The Lord Lyon King of Arms to matriculate new arms or existing arms.

More on Coat of Arms

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