Green light for new funds
Loans of up to £32,500 available for energy efficiency improvements and renewable technologies
HOMEOWNERS are being given help to run their properties more efficiently, or to introduce renewable technologies, thanks to a new interest-free loan scheme.
Loans of up to £32,500 will be available through The Home Energy Scotland Loan Scheme – which was launched on May 2.
A total £34 million in funding is available to owner-occupiers and private landlords to install energy efficiency measures, such as external or internal wall insulation, double glazing, boilers, warm air units and other forms of renewable technology that can be used in the home. Call 0808 808 2282 or visit www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-energyscotland-loan for further details.
‘Dust will settle’ on market
THE latest quarterly housing statistics published by Registers of Scotland for the period January to March 2017, reveal average house prices in Scotland have increased 5.5 per cent compared to the same quarter in 2016, while the volume of sales also rose. Looking at the annual change for the quarter in local authority areas, there are some marked highs and lows; gains include Clackmannanshire up 29.6 per cent, East Dunbartonshire 26.4 per cent and Falkirk 25.6 per cent. However, average prices in the Orkney Islands have decreased by 29.4 per cent and in East Ayrshire by 10.4 per cent.
Commenting on the findings, Simon Brown, partner and head of residential sales at CKD Galbraith, says: “Whilst the winter months and first quarter of the year have traditionally been held as a less favourable time to sell, the steady increase in sales reported by Registers of Scotland shows that in general, house buyers were not put off during the colder months. Our figures mirror this and reflect the fact that sellers now reap the benefits of a 12-month market and should not wait until spring and summer to sell.”
He adds: “Looking ahead, we expect to see a number of changes to the Scottish property market. As is typically the case in general election years, we anticipate the uncertainty caused may slow activity in the weeks leading up to June 8, however, the market will, we believe, pick up again and continue growing once the dust has settled.”
New talent pipeline
CALA Homes (West) has partnered with The Prince’s Trust and City of Glasgow College to deliver an initiative that aims to provide disadvantaged unemployed young people an opportunity to develop new skills and acquire hands-on experience in the construction industry.
To date, 12 people have successfully secured apprenticeships after completing a Get Into Construction course run by the Trust in conjunction with CALA and City of Glasgow College. CALA spokesperson Angus Murray, commented: “The industry needs new talent if we are to address the national shortage in skilled trades and to have had such a positive response to the scheme from the trainees, CALA employees and subcontractors is fantastic.” Ayrshire graces MY property find of the week is a real charmer. Retreat Cottage is a picturesque B-listed Victorian cottage in the popular Ayrshire village of Fenwick, only a short drive from Glasgow via the nearby M77.
The house is aptly named, having been constructed in the mid-19th century as a retirement home for Captain Michael Nelson, a veteran of the Scots Dragoon Guards who fought at the Battle of Waterloo and is buried in the village graveyard.
Retreat Cottage has been renovated to include a modern kitchen with Rayburn, dining room, living room (both with open fires), double bedroom and contemporary wet room. Upstairs are two large dormer bedrooms – master with en-suite shower room, while bedroom two extends 24ft. Landscaped gardens and a garage add to the appeal. Retreat Cottage is a gem – for sale with CKD Galbraith in Ayr at offers over £260,000.
BELLWAY Homes has donated £300 to Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Scotland, which needs to raise over £1 million per year to provide specialist support and information to those with spina bifida, hydrocephalus and related conditions.
Fraser Conn, Bellway’s sales director in Scotland, presented a cheque to Chantal Carr, the charity’s corporate fundraiser.
RARE TREAT: A picturesque exterior but fully modernised inside.
HARD HATS OFF: CALA Homes (West) apprentices celebrate at Dullatur Greens in Cumbernauld.
HELPING HAND: Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus receives £300 from Bellway Homes.