£1m+ residential market lagged in 2014 but already recovering -Rettie

RettieLast year saw a 6 per cent rise in £1m property transactions in Scotland, according to Edinburgh estate agents Rettie & Co.

However, the increase represented a more modest recovery than the overall market, where transactions rose by 12 per cent.

Rettie said the Independence Referendum and the introduction of Land & Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) had clearly impacted on the high-end market, with the former forcing a slowdown and the latter an increase, particularly to beat the higher rates of tax on this property from April 2015.

Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen (City & Shire) accounted for nearly 80 per cent of all £1m+ sales in Scotland, Rettie said.

In Glasgow and Aberdeen, the wealthy suburbs were the main focus for £1m+ sales, whereas, in Edinburgh, it is the New Town.

Over 70 per cent of £1m+ plus buyers already live in Scotland and the majority of buyers outside the country are Scottish or have strong Scottish connections.

Rettie & Co also said the market has recovered sharply in early 2015 with the estate agent increasing its own sales of high-end properties by 8-fold in the first 3 months of the year.

John Boyle
John Boyle

Simon Rettie, managing director, said: “The start of 2015 has been very strong for our Sales Teams focusing on the prime market. This was partly driven by the introduction of LBTT on 1st April 2015 and the front-loading of the market. It is also likely to be as a result of a post referendum recovery and improving consumer sentiment. We have seen slowdown in this market post-April as buyers at the top of the market take stock of the higher LBTT rates and the forthcoming General Election”.

John Boyle, director of research, added: “The Scottish prime housing market is emerging from a very challenging few years. The market remains highly concentrated in a small number of locations and remains heavily dependent on indigenous buyers.”

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