Neil Cameron from our Inverness office, comments:
"Overall, the total number of sales handled by the Inverness and Elgin offices are up 6% in 2009 compared with 2008. Of particular note the market below 300,000 is showing a 12% increase in concluded sales, whilst the upper end above 600,000 is showing a 10% increase. Sales in the middle sector of the market between 300,000 and 600,000 have remained at the same level as 2008 despite fewer properties coming to the market as the slack in this sector continues to be taken up.
Over the last 6 months we have sold a relatively healthy number of quality properties and receive continued interest in all properties whether they are town houses or country properties. We are continuing to see purchasers from all areas of Scotland and England being attracted to the area to live and work and these buyers are now providing genuine competition again to the local buyer with prices rising slowly as there is little sales slack in the system. In addition there are increasing numbers of buyers looking to purchase privately with funds at their disposal.
These figures from our Inverness and Elgin offices show an increase in transactions and reflect the changing attitude of potential buyers as finance becomes available and cash investment returns to residential property. Interest rates have never been lower and our alliance with Cluttons Private Finance has helped obtain finance for many purchasers who struggle to get through the new mortgage system on their own. This financial advice, combined with our ability to attract genuine purchasers, has resulted in most acceptable offers (94%) concluding to settlement which is a great comfort to our clients at a time when some hesitancy remains in the market.
These statistics clearly indicate the increasing buyer commitment and shortened selling periods for quality property we are experiencing in the North and we remain quietly optimistic for a continued recovery over the forthcoming months."