Mar­ket shows vi­tal signs

The Herald - Scotland's Homes - - Scotland’s Homes -

THE sec­ond quar­ter’s statis­tics re­leased by Reg­is­ters of Scot­land show lit­tle change over­all in aver­age houses prices, al­though there have been some re­gional leaps and bounds, most notably in East Ren­frew­shire, where the to­tal value of prop­erty sold is up 31% com­pared to the same time last year.

But what is per­haps a bet­ter in­di­ca­tor of re­turn­ing con­fi­dence in the hous­ing mar­ket is the news that more houses are chang­ing hands, with trans­ac­tions up 8%, and while sales of all prop­erty types have in­creased, the flat mar­ket is do­ing par­tic­u­larly well, with sales up al­most 17%.

Ret­tie & Co’s head of re­search, Dr John Boyle, said: “Th­ese lat­est statis­tics show the hous­ing mar­ket in Scot­land is now in re­cov­ery mode. Im­prov­ing eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity lev­els, con­sumer sen­ti­ment, bank lend­ing and new build ac­tiv­ity is help­ing to raise the mar­ket.

“The sharp rise in the vol­ume of flat­ted prop­erty bought is prob­a­bly tes­ta­ment to the ris­ing num­ber of first-time buy­ers re­turn­ing to the mar­ket, which is also ev­i­denced by new lend­ing fig­ures.”

Go­ing with the grain

Two Scot­tish en­tries have been short­listed for this year’s wood Awards, the UK’s pre­mier award scheme for the use of wood in ar­chi­tec­ture, fur­ni­ture and de­sign. Aber­feldy-based fur­ni­ture de­signer/maker An­gus Ross used lo­cal Perthshire green oak and FSC Euro­pean oak to make his Tay Bench.

And Ed­in­burgh- based David Blaikie Ar­chi­tects used FSC Scot­tish g r o wn wood in its col­lab­o­ra­tive Fu­ture Af­ford­able pro­ject t o de­liver a sus­tain­able and af­ford­able hous­ing sys­tem for the so­cial rented and pri­vate mar­ket. The win­ners will be an­nounced in Novem­ber.

One in a mil­lion

l TES­TA­mENT to the buoy­ancy of the Aberdeen prop­erty mar­ket, CALA Homes re­cently took the un­usual de­ci­sion to sell the waverly show­house at its Hay­field Grange de­vel­op­ment in Cults through closed bids. The prop­erty sold in ex­cess of its guide price of £1.45 mil­lion. The buyer can now walk into a fully fur­nished de­signer home – baby grand pi­ano in­cluded.

Stay in the style mile

l GLAS­Gow’S most ex­clu­sive new ad­dress, Buchanan Gar­dens, has fi­nally been un­veiled – and could tempt many a subur­ban­ite to swap their patch on the ground for one in the sky.

Two show apart­ments do full jus­tice to this land­mark de­vel­op­ment of 49, one, two and three-bed­room sin­gle and du­plex apart­ments re­sid­ing at the top of Buchanan Street.

Built to a spec­i­fi­ca­tion that has won eco-home sta­tus, the state-of-the-art properties all have ac­cess to a unique sky gar­den, in ad­di­tion to a res­i­dents’ gym and ex­ec­u­tive lounge.

most amaz­ing of all, prices start from just £149,995, with two-bed­room styles from £189,995 and larger three-bed du­plexes from around £319,995.

I can guar­an­tee you won’t have seen any­thing like this be­fore. The show flats are open daily from 11am un­til 7pm – or visit www.buchanan­gar­dens.co.uk for de­tails.

Heat boost for Scots

l wHILE the UKGovern­ment has de­layed its do­mes­tic Re­new­able Heat In­cen­tive scheme un­til spring 2014 at the ear­li­est, the Scot­tish Govern­ment has an­nounced a £3 mil­lion fund­ing boost to pro­mote en­ergy ef­fi­ciency.

The money will pro­vide in­ter­est free loans to en­able home­own­ers in­vest i n re­new­able heat and elec­tric­ity tech­nolo­gies, such as heat pumps, so­lar panels, bio-mass boil­ers and mi­cro-wind tur­bines.

Those who in­stall re­new­able elec­tric­ity sys­tems will be el­i­gi­ble for pay­ments for feed­ing elec­tric­ity into the national grid; house­holds that opt for heat­ing sys­tems can also ben­e­fit from Re­new­able Heat Pre­mium Pay­ment vouch­ers.

The fund­ing will be di­rectly tar­geted at homes in fuel poverty, help­ing to boost house­hold in­come.

GRAND DE­SIGN: CALA’s showhome at Hay­field Grange in Aberdeen sold for more than £1.45m.

EX­CLU­SIVE: Buchanan Gar­dens is in the heart of Glas­gow’s shop­ping area.

THE HIGH LIFE: Buchanan Gar­dens.

GOOD WITH WOOD: David Blaikie Ar­chi­tects.

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