How your home has lost a tenth of its value thanks to recession
THE HOUSING market in Scotland remains largely stagnant – although the number of properties bought and sold in the first three months of the year has shown a slight increase, according to new figures.
The Scottish House Price Monitor from Lloyds TSB shows the average Scottish house price is now £148,024 – a fall of 2.7 per cent.
However the number of sales is up by 19 per cent when compared to the same quarter one year ago.
The uplift in sales during the first three months of the year has been connected to the withdrawal of stamp duty concession at the end of March.
The average house price is highest in Edinburgh at £190,743 and lowest in the south west, where the average price is £126,403.
Prices in Dundee showed the biggest increase – with the average property now selling for £152,962 – an increase of 5.3 per cent.
Although consumer confidence is increasing household budgets are still being squeezed and banks are still reluctant to lend – meaning the Scottish property market is unlikely to show any substantial changes any time soon. The latest figures show house prices are now 89 per cent of the levels they reached at the peak of the property boom – and the reluctance of lenders to offer new mortgages continues to cause difficulties.
Although prices in the capital are still higher than elsewhere the average price has fallen steeper than anywhere else in Scotland – with a drop of 14 per cent since a year ago.
Prices in oil rich Aberdeen have also fallen, with the average house now selling for £160,825 – a drop of 9.9 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Donald MacRae, chief economist of Lloyds TSB Scotland, said: “There is no sign of a return to the levels of prices and transactions of 2007 but equally no precipitous falls in either house sales or house prices. The Scottish housing market remains in the doldrums.”
He said while consumer confidence has risen slightly, the squeeze on household spending would continue to put the brakes on the housing market. But there were indications that the Scottish economy was about to enter a period of growth.
“The Scottish housing market has adjusted to the recession with a halving of sales and a period of volatile price movement.
“Consumer confidence had been at recession levels at the end of 2011 but has since become less negative in the first quarter of 2012.
“A high level of retail price inflation in excess of the increase in earnings continues to squeeze disposable income.
“The Bank of Scotland PMI indicator for the first four months of 2012 is positive suggesting that the Scottish economy will show growth and therefore avoid a “double dip” recession.
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