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Highest January home sales in eight years

Your Move & Acadata Scotland House Price Index - Highest January home sales in eight years

  • Scotland sees highest January sales since 2008, up 24% year-on-year with rush to avoid LBTT surcharge
  • Biggest uplift in Midlothian, rising 38% on January 2015, as flats and terraced houses are snapped up
  • Average Scottish house prices advance 0.8% in January to £171k, up from 0.3% the previous month
  • Strongest surge in Stirling, where property values in the area have jumped 13.5% over the past year

Christine Campbell, Your Move managing director in Scotland, comments: “The Scottish housing market made a bracing start to the year with the highest January sales since 2008. Property transactions in Scotland are up 24% year-on-year, easily outpacing sales south of the border, as England and Wales only saw a 1% rise over the same time period. The surge in Scottish home purchases has been propelled by second-home and buy-to-let buyers eager to avoid paying the 3% Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) surcharge. As this tax hike was only announced in December’s Scottish Budget, January’s surge in sales may only be the tip of the iceberg.

“In Midlothian, property sales have outperformed every other area, shooting up 38% over the three months November 2015 to January 2016 compared to the same three months a year ago. This growth has been aided by the lower rate of LBTT on the purchase of cheaper properties, with flat and terraced house sales accounting for the largest rise. This trend can also be seen in Glasgow, which narrowly beat Edinburgh to become the area with the highest absolute increase in sales. The only areas in Scotland which have seen a decline in sales from November to January, compared to the previous three months, are Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire. In Aberdeen City sales have fallen by 11% in this time period, as a result of the oil crisis and the large proportion of expensive detached homes in the city which are hit hardest by the LBBT.

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YM ScotHPI March16