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Strong Price Growth In Booming Scottish Property Market

Leading independent property consultancy Galbraith has published its market review for 2021.

Scotland’s property market has been characterised by very strong demand and competition between buyers, resulting in a rise in sales of 36 per cent compared with the previous year and an annual price increase of 10.1 per cent, with some exceptional premiums being paid for the most attractive rural properties, the firm reports.

Several areas of the country have witnessed exceptional demand. One property sold for 51 per cent above the guide price and another for 50 per cent above the asking price.

The average premium paid above the asking price for properties sold this year in Inverness-shire was 17 per cent; while in Perthshire it was 16.2 per cent.

The number of houses sold has risen by 36 per cent year on year in Scotland as a whole, and the regions with the highest recorded sales were Perthshire and Inverness-shire.

Simon Brown, partner and head of residential agency for Galbraith said: “Rural property has been highly prized this year as many people have been attracted to the idea of a rural retreat, offering more space, greater privacy and a better lifestyle. A good proportion of properties have attracted offers from multiple bidders, resulting in some houses changing hands for significantly more than the guide price. Market activity has been well balanced across all regions of Scotland and all price bands, with higher-priced property also selling well.

“Looking ahead, many of the factors underpinning demand are likely to continue next year. Although the Bank of England has just increased the interest rate to 0.25 per cent, mortgages remain relatively affordable, which has a major impact on transactions. The fact that working from home is likely to continue next year means that many people will be able to consider a more rural property, as the commute is less of a factor and therefore this is likely to also sustain demand.”

The convenience of virtual viewings and video tours continues to have a significant impact on the market. In Aberdeenshire, Ayrshire and Inverness-shire, some property sales were concluded without the buyer ever having visited the property in person.

Regional trends of note during 2021 include:

  • Aberdeenshire

Prices achieved on average  4 per cent above guide price this year; the fastest sale was agreed in 4 days. Sales are up by 26 per cent compared to the preceding year. The average number of viewings increased by 48 per cent compared with 2020.

  • Ayrshire

Prices achieved on average  11.8 per cent above guide price; the fastest sale was agreed in 5 days. The average number of viewings was 14 per property and one property attracted 106 viewings.

  • Central Belt

Viewings were up by 20 per cent year on year and the average premium achieved above the guide price was 21 per cent. Rural property with the potential for modernisation or development has proved particularly attractive. Many expat Scots returning home  and buying property this year.

  • Dumfries & Galloway

Prices achieved on average 10 per cent above guide price. Sales up by 16 per cent on the preceding year, which was in itself an exceptionally busy year. Continued keen demand in rural property; a high proportion of buyers from England due to the interesting price differential between properties in the south and properties in Dumfries & Galloway.

  • Inverness-shire

Prices achieved on average  17 per cent above guide price; fastest sale agreed in 7 days. One property sold for 50 per cent above the asking price. Sales up by 45 per cent year on year.  The Highland region had the second largest property market in Scotland by value.

  • Moray

Prices achieved on average  3.5 per cent above guide price; the fastest sale was agreed in one day. Sales up by 38 per cent compared with the preceding year. The average number of viewings increased by 98 per cent compared with 2020, demonstrating the intense interest from purchasers.

  • Perthshire

Prices achieved on average  16.2 per cent above guide price; the fastest sale was agreed in less than 24 hours. The largest premium paid above the asking price was 35 per cent. There were four sales agreed this year to buyers who did not visit the property in person. Perthshire had the largest market in Scotland by value.

  • Scottish Borders

Prices achieved on average  4 per cent above the guide price; the fastest sale was agreed in 3 days. The highest premium paid above the asking price was 41 per cent.

 Galbraith handles the sale of property valued at £55.4m on average per quarter. The firm has 13 offices across Scotland and the north of England and two-thirds of its property sales are to buyers registered with the firm.