United Kingdom Property News

Scottish Housing Market Booming Ahead of Independence Vote

With the independence vote in Scotland next month, there has been speculation about the potential negative impact on the property markets for some time although according to data released this week, it would appear the opposite is true.

Two rental indices show that rental prices have improved more in Scotland than in the rest of the UK, with the Scottish rental market seeing average rent price rises of 10% in July compared to 4.4% in the UK as a whole.

In terms of property sales, Scotland's market is also performing well compared with the rest of the UK with annual house price growth reaching a four year high. With property prices up 5.7% in a year, Scotland's performance has outpaced many other parts of the UK.

However, putting price growth into perspective the situation is much the same as the rest of the UK in that certain regions are driving growth at faster rates than others. In Scotland, Aberdeen and Edinburgh have seen the strongest increases just as the borough of Greater London has done in England.

With the independence vote just a month away on 18th September, the data released by LSL Acadata shows that fears over which way the vote will go having a negative effect on housing prices have not materialised.

The LSL index shows that price growth in Scotland over the last year has been the biggest increase since September 2010, stronger than annual rises in the North of England, the Midlands and Wales. While many areas of the UK are experiencing falling house prices, the Scottish market is moving in the other direction.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors estimates that house prices in the UK will rise nationally by 2.6% over the next 12 months whereas surveyors in Scotland anticipate a price rise of 3.3%.

This indicates a more optimistic outlook for Scotland's property market despite the political uncertainty in the run-up to the referendum. Once the independence issue has been settled, it is widely expected that the Scottish property market could take off even further.