Positive Activity In The Residential Market
Our residential team is pleased to report positive activity in the housing market with property sales across our 12 offices during 2010 exceeding £200 million to date.
Regionally, prices achieved have varied somewhat - Perth properties have averaged 8.9% above asking prices, Glasgow 7.95%, Edinburgh 3.83%, Peebles 3.17% and Elgin 2.66%. The additional offices are all within one percentage point of the asking price, highlighting our expert knowledge of the markets in which we operate.
During the summer months, a number of notable sales were achieved with levels of activity and volumes of sales higher than the projections for this year.
There are active buyers out there so careful pricing and close communication with potential buyers is as important as ever. A recent example of this being Invereshie, a delightful country property set in the heart of the Cairngorm National Park, which achieved considerably more than the £1.35m asking price.
The firm’s agents across Scotland have however, encountered regional variations in terms of market trends and conditions.
John Bound, partner in Inverness, said: “Although sales rates remain slow in most sectors, over the last four months we have seen a notable increase in viewings. Interest is strong below £250,000 and above £1,000,000 where there are examples of buyers competing for a limited number of attractive, well located properties. These sectors have seen an increase in offers of over 100% from 2009 with the most attractive properties still achieving premiums above Home Report values.
“The vast majority of our buyers come from the south or the central belt where they have either sold and are relocating for a better lifestyle or seeking a second home. A lack of confidence in the market remains the biggest psychological hurdle for many buyers not helped by the difficulty in achieving finance with the timescales and information needed to obtain acceptable loan offers proving frustrating. This is a trend we see continuing into early 2011.”
Emma Chalmers, associate in Perth, said: “The properties consistently attracting interest are those sitting in a rural, undisturbed position particularly those with land which continue to attract equestrian or amenity lifestyle buyers. The number of second home buyers are much fewer in number as those who traditionally would have enjoyed a holiday house in Perthshire have decided not to over expose themselves financially or are no longer in the position to do so. As a result, houses usually attractive to that buyer are experiencing much lower number of viewings. If owners are wishing to sell during this time the best strategy is to have your house on the market, fully exposed and set at a realistic guide price, which has become imperative as buyers are very astute on current values.”
Alasdair Mackenzie, associate in Edinburgh, said: “Whilst first time buyers remain thin on the ground which is affecting the lower end of the market, we have seen continuing demand in the £400,000 to £1,000,000 bracket. This year we have sold four properties so far to buyers living abroad who have purchased without viewing the property first. It appears they are taking advantage of favourable exchange rates. The market took time to reignite following the summer break but has gathered momentum again throughout October. Buyers remain cautious but we have seen competition for competitively priced properties in prime locations.”
David Corrie, agent in Castle Douglas, said: “We have seen a steady summer, with the usual influx of seasonal visitors boosting viewings and consequently the number of properties sold. The north of England and Midlands brings the largest number of purchasers, with the remainder being relocating Scots in and out of the area. Instructions were varied, with a number of second home sales, retirement and relocation sales, and properties with land and smallholdings retaining a good level of sale throughout the year. Having said that, the market is still sensitive across the board and property needs to be priced keenly and marketed well.”
Bob Cherry, partner in Ayr, said: “Anywhere with an easy commute to Glasgow as well as uninterrupted sea views is always popular, for example, Largs where we recently sold a house in a matter of weeks – it was extremely well presented and offered direct sea views. In Ayrshire, where developers have obtained planning in desirable areas with exceptional views and have a reputation for quality, design and a bespoke service, sales have held up. For example three oak framed homes being built by Hendry Homes just outside Ayr with superb views across to Arran were all sold off plan at the asking price this summer.”
CKD Galbraith has experienced agents covering the whole of Scotland. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of our agents.