What is a Note of Interest or Noting Interest in Scotland? How Do I Note Interest in a Property?

If you are interested in buying a particular property but are not yet ready or willing to offer, a Note of Interest is a first step towards ensuring (but not a guarantee) that you get an opportunity to make an offer on that property before it is sold to somebody else.  A buyer who wishes to Note Interest in a property should ask their solicitor to do this for them, to do this you will need to give your solicitor:

  1.  The address of the property
  2.  The name of the estate agent marketing the property
  3.  Ideally provide the agent’s phone number

So what is a Note of Interest?

A ‘note of interest’ is a potential buyer’s solicitor’s way of telling the selling agent that their client would like an opportunity to make an offer on the property that’s for sale.

A ‘Note of Interest’ is a peculiarly Scottish thing and is effectively a courtesy between solicitors, although I’ve known non-solicitor estate agents to recognise the concept too, though not necessarily in the strict way that they are applied by solicitor/estate agents as a result of the Law Society’s guidelines (see below).

Are Notes of Interest Legally Binding?

Notes of Interest are not legally binding, however, they do have some consequences as far as solicitor/estate agency firms are concerned due to Law Society guidelines which solicitor/estate agents have to follow. As a result of those Law Society Guidelines, where a seller’s solicitor/estate agent decides to set a Closing Date, they have to get in touch with every potential buyer’s solicitor who has noted interest to inform them of the Closing Date and therefore give them an opportunity to bid on the property at the Closing Date.

Does a Note of Interest Guarantee the Property Sale?

If you are a buyer, just because your solicitor has noted interest on your behalf, a seller’s solicitor/estate agent can still sell the property to another person without giving you an opportunity to offer, if that’s their client’s instructions. So it’s not a guarantee of being able to make an offer. Equally, just because more than one potential buyer’s solicitor has Noted Interest on their behalf the seller’s solicitor/estate agent doesn’t have to set a Closing Date. The Law Society guidelines do however say that the seller’s solicitor/estate agent should make all efforts to ensure that anyone who has Noted Interest is given an opportunity to make an offer.

Need More Information on Putting in A Note of Interest?

Call us on 0345 646 0208 or email [email protected] to talk to one of our property experts

It should also be noted that these Law Society guidelines around Notes of Interest do not apply to non-solicitor/estate agents.


6 responses to “What is a Note of Interest or Noting Interest in Scotland? How Do I Note Interest in a Property?”

  1. Margaret Farquharson avatar
    Margaret Farquharson

    Roughly how much would I expect to pay a solicitor for conveyancing on a £95000 property as a first time buyer?

    1. David Marshall avatar

      Evening Margaret,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Conveyancing fees tend not to vary according to the purchase price of the property, but this will of course affect how much Land & Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) that you pay. You will be pleased to hear that, as it stands, you would pay no LBTT on a property at £95,000.

      What you pay for conveyancing can vary according to your personal circumstances, so we have an online quote generator which you can use to help out on that front.


      Alternatively, if you want to give us a call on 0131 202 5444 to ask any questions you may have about costs, or the buying process in general, then one of our team would be delighted to do whatever they can to help.

      All the best,


  2. Emma avatar

    Would you have to pay fees to a solicitor if you asked them to note interest on a property for you but you end up not being in a position to offer? Or do you only pay fees if you offer and it is accepted…so all the paperwork to follow from that?

    1. Robert Carroll avatar

      Thank you for your comment Emma. The answer is that most solicitors will Note Interest for you without charging. Most will actually submit Offers, within reason, without charging too. Normally, you will only be on the hook for any fees when the conveyancing work has started after an Offer has verbally been accepted. If our team can be of any help with this, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with them by calling our Conveyancing Department on 0131 297 7999 or emailing [email protected].

  3. Tracy Gaffney avatar
    Tracy Gaffney

    I am a cash first time buyer interested in purchasing a three bedroom Ed flat in Newington and was wondering what the typical percentage over the asking price might be. There is a lot of interest in this newly listed property and was wondering if there was any market data you could provide. There are already four notes of interest within a couple of days .

    1. Robert Carroll avatar

      Thank you for your comment. I would recommend a look at the following article which is aimed exactly at people in your situation. It’s an inexact science however and the best advice is always to ensure you have a budget and stick to it, that you don’t pay more than you believe that it is worth to you and that you, if you slightly overpaid and had to sell the property quickly, you would be able to. As for what percentage over the asking price a property is likely to sell for…at Closing Dates we will see anywhere between 0% and 30% depending on the level of interest, competition and the area. I hope that this helps. https://www.mov8realestate.com/2013/01/how-much-should-i-pay-at-a-closing-date-and-how-can-i-avoid-closing-dates/

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