The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands)
North-east housing market ‘weathered worst’ of downturn
Property: Welcome for increase in homes changing hands
Property experts say the north-east has “weathered the worst” of the housing market downturn.
The value of Scotland’s property market is on course to top £18 billion for the second consecutive year, despite “increasing anxiety” over Brexit.
New housing figures from Aberdein Considine reveal sales in Scotland hit £5.3bn during the last quarter up by £100 million on the same time last year.
More than 28,000 homes changed hands during the quarter, according to the firm’s Property Monitor report, bringing the total value of sales in 2019 to £13.3bn.
Sales in Aberdeenshire were up 4.1%, and the overall value of property sold in Aberdeen and the Shire hit almost £1.2bn for the year, up £24m on last year, with 2,288 properties changing hands.
The average cost of a home in Aberdeenshire was found to remain flat at £215,840, but the value of property changing hands saw an uplift of 4.4% to £255m.
Despite a 3.3% fall in average prices in Aberdeen, now at £193,141, the city was a new-build hotspot.
The average cost of a new-build home in Aberdeen was £299,663, with only the Glasgow suburbs of East Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire exceeding that figure.
Bob Fraser, senior property partner at Aberdein Considine,
“The market in the north-east is continuing its recovery”
said: “The market in the north-east is continuing its recovery and it’s extremely welcome to see an increase in the number of homes changing hands.
“It definitely feels like we have weathered the worst of the housing market downturn.”
Twenty local authority areas saw the value of homes sold rise, with the Western Isles registering the biggest increase, at 24%.
Overall, prices for the whole Highlands and islands area were up 2.5% year-on-year to £161,475, though total home sales were down fractionally.
The firm’s figures come against a backdrop of “increasing anxiety” over the impact the UK’s exit from the EU will have on the value of homes.
A major poll of homeowners carried out by Aberdein Considine suggests 50% of Scots fear their property will decrease in value after the split.
Jacqueline Law, managing partner at Aberdein Considine, said: “There has, over the third quarter of the year, been a sharp increase in the number of Scots who fear that Brexit will result in the value of their home decreasing.
“There is clearly homeowner anxiety around Brexit, but this has yet to be reflected in sales figures, perhaps due to the greater public having little idea what Brexit will actually looklike.”