It is not about us, it is about you.

It is about Small House Builders, SMEs and Property Developers who are unable to get their project off the ground or Landowners who have a site which should be providing new homes, but which just does not seem able to proceed.

From our years of experience acting for housebuilders, developers and landowners, it became clear that the smaller scale, low volume, sites, generally in regional areas are in a difficult place.

They, are often faced with requirements which can be accommodated for major sites and by national housebuilders, but which seem insurmountable for smaller, low volume sites. And yet, these sites are essential for delivering the homes with the diversity and location required in Scotland, and also, when effective, these sites often have a disproportionately large economic and social benefits to their local areas.

Enabling Development Group has been set up to help these small house builders, developers and landowners, and there are two main strands to what Enabling Development Group does:


We have found that often, a site remains locked down, because the project has become too silo’d and focussed on delivering a development that no longer works. Looking at the site collectively from the multiple perspectives of planning, architecture, valuation, finance and legal perspective, will often generate a fresh and viable perspective.

We will review locked down sites, and pooling our several specialisms we will provide a high level, impartial commentary on the site. By pooling our expertise and experience, we can identify avenues and approaches which might unlock the site, whilst discounting options that are unlikely to work in the real world.

We do not do this as a business, and there is no charge for this. Our commentary can then be taken back to the original team, or the possible solutions can be identified in more detail, via any of our individual companies.

If you have a site, which seems locked down, please do make contact.


We also see that smaller housebuilders, and smaller scale, low volume sites are in need of a voice and a platform which understands their needs and the hurdles that are thrown in the way of providing homes on these sites.

Through Enabling Development and individually, we are regularly consulted with by Scottish Government, and engage in many other consultations where we can help promote and understanding of this sector.

We also arrange seminars and discussion groups to bring smaller housebuilders and developers together, with other relevant parties: such as Scottish Water, Open Reach and local authorities. So far we have arranged meetings in Glenrothes, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Perth.

Please see our case studies page for more details, but recent successes include:

Collaborating with Scottish Government and Homes for Scotland on Building Scotland Fund. Our engagement led to minimum loan criteria being reduced from £1m to £350k.

Openreach reducing their free full fibre installation offer to include smaller developments of 20 or more, previously set at 30 or more.

If you have any issues that you would want championed, please do let us know.


The Team


Managing Director, Ballantynes Surveyors

Ballantynes Logo

Rory Ballantyne qualified as a Chartered Surveyor in 2006 and is a Graduate of Northumbria University, Newcastle. Rory has over 14 years’ experience in the Scottish residential market place –working with a leading global real estate adviser in their Land and Development Team as well as working with one of Scotland’s leading housebuilders before setting up Ballantynes. Rory enjoys spending time with his family and a number of outdoor activities including Shooting, Fishing and previously played rugby for Broughton Rugby Club in Edinburgh but due to family commitments and injuries (and age) he continues his involvement by being the Club’s Main sponsor.

Ewan McIntyre sml


Managing Director, EMA Architects + Masterplanners


Over a twenty year period Ewan has built EMA to become one of Scotland’s leading practices in the residential development industry. EMA is now the architect of choice for many of the country’s housebuilders.
Ewan has been involved in some of the most important settlement expansions and regeneration projects in the country and he brings a wealth of experience to residential projects of all types and sizes, from small and sensitive niche developments to major masterplans. Ewan’s particular skill is in creating solutions that bring together the often opposing design and commercial requirements of developers and local authorities.

Allan Smith


Head of Specialist Finance, Money Sense Matters

Development finance

Allan has worked in financial services since 2001 in a number of roles in administration and underwriting. In 2009, Allan joined Bridging Loans Ltd and help to launch Development Finance Ltd in 2010 supporting many SMEs to fund their projects and build longstanding relationships. After a 10 year period growing the brand and product for Development Finance Ltd, Allan decided it was time for pastures new and joined Money Sense Matters who offer a one stop shop for expert financial advice.

John Sinclair sml


Consultant, Burness Paull

John specialises in residential development and provides a wide variety of advice across the whole spectrum of property matters relevant to house builders and landowners.  He has acted for clients across Scotland including niche developers, and national house builders for over 25 years.
John is a member of the Property Law Committee and the Property Law Reform sub-committee at the Law Society of Scotland.  He also has extensive experience in acting for consortia of landowners, providing independent legal advice to the landowners as a group and often provides property support to litigation colleagues.

Richard Goodfellow sml


Partner, Burness Paull

Richard has specialised in residential property development for over 20 years.  He acts for a wide range of developers, housebuilders such as Stewart Milne Group, landowners including the Duke of Fife, Aberdeen University and Rolls-Royce plc, funders, and high net worth investors.

Richard has been heavily involved in many developments in the north east and beyond including major housing developments at Westhill, Portlethen, Cove, Kingswells, Kepplestone, Muggiemoss, and currently a new settlement of 4000 house at Chapelton and a further major development of 3000 houses at Countesswells in addition to a range of smaller bespoke developments.

His expertise includes land acquisitions and site assemblies for developers, promotion of strategic land, option agreements, joint ventures, promotion agreements, infrastructure agreements and disposals.

Richard chairs our housebuilding sector group and is ranked Band 1 by Chambers as a leading expert in his field.