£1m new-build homes drive up Edinburgh house prices

Edinburgh has had a major boost in £1 million new builds and boasts the most seven-figure properties in Scotland, despite a fall in the number of millionaire homes across Scotland last year.

A new development helped make Woodcroft one of Edinburghs most expensive streets. Picture: contributed

The average selling price of properties in some of Scotland’s most popular areas increased 35 per cent over the past five years, with Portobello the biggest climber in Edinburgh at 28.6 per cent.

Property agency Rettie & Co said Edinburgh is at the heart of the £1m new build market with a combination of conversion and refurbishment schemes in the New Town, complementing high value new builds across the city.

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The sale of all penthouses and flats at a new development in Morningside has pushed Woodcroft up to be the second most expensive street in the city.

And Rettie said the joint venture between Queensberry Properties and Telereal Trillium demonstrates the importance of the million pound market in Edinburgh and the Lothians.

The Scottish £1m plus market fell overall in 2017, with 159 such sales, a drop of 4 per cent on the 2016 total.

But the capital bucked the trend, with Edinburgh and its hinterland accounting for around three-quarters of the country’s 2017 £1m-plus sales last year.

Dr John Boyle, director of research and strategy at Rettie & Co, said: “There have been some significant shifts in the £1m-plus market in Scotland in recent times.

“There has been a concentration of such sales in Edinburgh and surrounding areas and new build sales are 
playing a much bigger role in this market, partly due to the lack of available stock elsewhere.

“The performance of this market is important in a Scottish context, even though it only accounts for 0.2 per cent of all Scottish house sales, it contributes around 7 per cent of Land and Buildings Transaction Tax revenues.”

As well as an increase at the upper end, the burgeoning market in Edinburgh’s Dalry, Gorgie and Slateford has seen a huge hike in prices of one-bedroom flats, up 28.5 per cent in a year to £144,052.

And showing speed really is of the essence for buyers keen for a slice of the Edinburgh property pie, the average time to sell in these areas has slashed from 92 days in 2013 to just 14 days.

ESPC’s business analyst Maria Botha-Lopez says: “Property prices in some areas of Edinburgh have risen fast over the last five years, and over the last couple of years in particular, the market has been in favour of the seller.

“Over the last three months, the percentage of properties sold within 14 days rose by 13.3 per cent year-on-year to 35.4 per cent, and 29.4 per cent of sales set a closing date, indicating that sellers are attracting a number of competing offers from buyers.”

Earlier this week, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) said the number of homes on estate agents’ books has dwindled to a new low.

Average property stock levels per branch on agents’ books fell to a new record low of just under 42, as new buyer inquiries, new instructions from sellers and newly-agreed sales continued to drift lower in February, its report said.

New buyer inquiries fell for the eleventh month in a row while sales trends have remained similar over the past six months.