House prices bounce back following indyref jitters

There was a jump of 0.7 per cent, meaning the average house price was 164,798. Picture: TSPL
There was a jump of 0.7 per cent, meaning the average house price was 164,798. Picture: TSPL
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The property market in Scotland has recuperated as the average price of a home increased in October following “uncertainty” linked to the referendum, according to a report.

There was a jump of 0.7 per cent from the previous month, meaning the average house price was £164,798, a survey by LSL Property Services/Acadata revealed.

The figure is just £717 below the pre-recession peak of May 2008 and follows a fall in prices in August and September this year ahead of the vote on independence.

Sales of homes costing more than £1 million also increased, which experts said showed there was a “feelgood factor” returning to the property market.

There were 23 sales of £1m-plus houses, 12 more than in the previous month and the highest figure since September 2008.

Christine Campbell, regional managing director of Your Move, yesterday said: “Thousands of Scots are finally seeing the value of their home rebuilt from the ashes of the financial crash, with prices on average now just £717 (or 0.4 per cent) off the May 2008 high.

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“Since the independence question evaporated, a new ray of confidence and certainty is radiating through the market as normality is resumed.

“The feelgood factor is especially pronounced at the highest tiers of the property market, where political uncertainty froze activity most acutely.

“Sales of properties worth £1m or above have more than doubled from September to October.

“After a run of monthly house price stumbles on the way to the landmark referendum, the Scottish property market has recuperated.”

There were rises in prices over the month recorded in 20 of the 32 local authorities, with East Dunbartonshire experiencing the biggest increase of 5.8 per cent, to take the average cost to £223,146.

Edinburgh remains the most expensive area to buy a home, with an average cost of £239,335 following a 0.2 per cent monthly increase.

Peter Williams, housing market specialist and chairman of Acadata, said: “This was the tenth of the last 12 months in which house prices have risen, with falls limited to the months of August and September – the two months which straddled the referendum and the resultant uncertainty that defined the period.”

Mr Williams said the new Land and Buildings Transaction Tax, which comes into force on 1 April next year, will have a “significant impact” on the high-end sector.

He added: “On a property costing £1m, there will be an additional £33,550 of tax payable, with this level of tax increasing as prices increase.

“There is therefore likely to be a surge in the number of high-value properties that change hands between now and the end of March 2015 as purchasers seek to avoid the additional tax payable after the change-over date.”

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