Edinburgh dominates sales of £1m-plus homes

A new report by estate agent Rettie & Co. showed the Edinburgh and Lothians area continued to dominate sales of Scottish homes worth £1 million or more in 2017.

Rettie said there were 159 £1m+ house sales in Scotland in 2017, down from 166 in 2016 and 176 in 2015.

But there was strong growth in such transactions in Edinburgh and the Lothians in 2017, with 119 of the 159 £1m+ transactions taking place in the area, up 17% from 102 in 2016.

“The trend of annual improvement from 2012 was interrupted by the introduction of Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT), which first caused a forestalling of transactions, and has subsequently kept supply constrained,” said the Rettie report.

“Higher transaction costs and tax rates naturally disincentivise activity and this is acting to constrain supply coming to the market.

“In fact, the difference in sales between 2016 and 2017 has been mainly down to the supply of new build units over £1m+ with second hand sales remaining flat across Scotland, with the exception of Edinburgh that saw rises in both.”

The report added: “Overall, the total number of £1m+ house sales fell marginally (in 2017), compounding the fall from 2015 to 2016.

“However, this belies the fact that while sales in the beleaguered Aberdeen market have fallen signicantly over the past few years, and the country house market remains subdued, sales in Edinburgh & the East of Scotland have been rising.

“In 2017 there were over 100 £1m-plus sales in Edinburgh, and 119 sales including the wider Lothians.

“With 159 £1m+ sales across Scotland, this means that 75% of £1m+ activity is occurring in the Capital and its hinterland.”