Boris bounce sees sale of homes hit new peak
December saw an unseasonal jump
The Scottish property market enjoyed an unusually sharp rise in December sales following Boris Johnson’s General Election win, new research has revealed.
Aberdein Considine’s Property Monitor report shows more than 10,000 homes changed hands in December, an unseasonal jump of 15% on November and the highest single month of sales recorded since October 2018.
In total, sales increased in 25 out of the country’s 32 local authority areas and £1.9 billion worth of property was purchased in the post-polling day rush.
Scotland registered sales totalling just under £18.7bn for the year thanks to the late surge, £550 million more than 2018.
Jacqueline Law, managing partner at Aberdein Considine, said the figures were early signs that the so-called ‘Boris Bounce’ was being felt both north and south of the border.
“After a year of political and economic uncertainty, it would appear that the decisive nature of the election result has brought a fresh wave of confidence to the property market,” she said.
“And while Scottish votes contributed little to the Prime Minister’ parliamentary majority, it looks like the country’s homeowners may well benefit in the years ahead.
As we head into the spring market, there is every sign that this trend will continue– Jacqueline Law, Aberdein Considine
“You have to go back to December 2007, before the global credit crunch, to find a higher month of pre-Christmas property sales.
“As we head into the spring market, there is every sign that this trend will continue, thanks largely to an injection of first-time buyers using new shared equity schemes.”
First-time buyers accounted for 50% of mortgaged property purchases in Scotland last year, according to the Property Monitor report. Up to 6,000 more are expected to take advantage of the Scottish Government’s new First Home Fund in 2020.
The shared equity scheme gives buyers up to £25,000 towards the cost of buying a home and is forecast to be a driving force in the market this year.
However, new entrants will still face the same old obstacles as they step onto the property ladder: rising property prices. The report shows that the average price paid for a home in Scotland during Q4 of 2019 was £178,151 and rising at a rate of 2.2% per year.
East Lothian has become the most expensive place in Scotland to buy. The average sale price in the region is now £267,905, more than £2,000 higher than second-placed Edinburgh.
East Dunbartonshire recorded the largest price rise during the quarter and is now the country’s third most expensive area, with an average sale price of £263,291.
Glasgow and Dundee offer the best value for money of Scotland’s major cities, with average prices of £163,874 and £146,101 respectively during the last quarter.
Prices are also stable in Aberdeen at £194,528, down just 0.1% on last year. However, for the first time since the oil and gas industry downturn, sales in the city jumped by 10.1% during the quarter, indicating better times may lie ahead.