Why Scotland is a Luxury Property Investment Hotspot
Affordability, good schools, access to world-class nature, welcoming people and… whisky! We know exactly why Scotland is a great place to live, and it seems that those from further afield are cottoning on to this too, with an increasing amount of people investing in housing here, particularly when it comes to top-end markets.
In fact, the number of people buying luxury homes worth over £1 million rose by 20 % in Scotland between 2018 and 2019. Compare this to the overall UK picture, where the high-end housing market rose by just 5% during the same period, suggests a trend where Scotland is becoming a top spot for the primary and second-home markets of the super-rich.
Healthy market activity
Despite all the recent political uncertainty, compared to the UK picture overall, Scotland’s housing market has remained both resilient and buoyant. Whilst English homeowners have been struggling to shift properties, taking an average of 69 days to sell during a market slow-down south of the border, Scottish sale periods have remained relatively short, less than half that time at 32 days on average. This is especially true in Edinburgh and Glasgow, both in the top three of the fastest moving property markets in the UK last year. Edinburgh also boasted the highest price growth of any city in the UK last year, at 5.4%. It appears that, though prices are seeing a rise, the growth remains affordable, keeping healthy moment going in the Scottish market overall, which is also boosting the top end of the market and seeing an increase in sales over the million mark.
The major markets of Glasgow and Edinburgh remain popular with those looking to invest. Top postcodes in these cities are the traditional favourites of New Town and Morningside in Edinburgh and Glasgow’s west end G12 area. Locations also seeing a boost more recently include Murrayfield in Edinburgh, which has seen an increase in £1million sales by 50% since 2017, due to its central location and being home to top class sporting facilities.
St Andrews, the picturesque coastal town long-popular with European and US tourists due to its ‘home of golf’ status, has seen a surge in luxury market activity, with return visitors deciding to invest over holiday rents. St Andrews in fact boasts some of the priciest properties in the whole of Scotland. Developments such as the red sandstone Hamilton Grand, which sees views of both the coastline and the old course, offers 26 apartments starting at £1.05 million, the more expensive being £6.1millionm – offering 4 bedrooms the best views and membership to the high-end Kohler Waters spa to boot.
Similar-spec luxury conversion projects in Edinburgh and Glasgow have been luring international investment, with those looking for a more rural Scottish experience snapping up entire estates, shooting lodges or even castles. A 350-acre estate with a period home plus multiple cottages on its grounds can be found for around £2.5 million for instance, and foreign investors are increasingly enjoying this value for money and the quality of life on offer here.
Affordable and accessible
In a practical sense, improvements to transport links in Scotland internally and better rail and air links to the south as well as internationally, means Scotland is increasingly attractive as a base for those from further afield, perhaps with work or family elsewhere. Couple this with the fact that property prices here remain low – more than 30% below equivalent properties across the rest of the UK. And with healthy market activity, prices are predicted to rise by around 14% over the next two years, creating an attractive opportunity to grab a relative bargain in the knowledge of the potential to make money on your investment too, all whilst enjoying the quality of life Scotland has to offer.