Scots house sales to hit £19bn despite Brexit fears

Jacqueline Law

The value of Scotland’s residential property market is on course to top £18 billion for the second consecutive year – despite anxiety over Brexit.

New figures from law firm Aberdein Considine show that sales hit £5.3 billion during the third quarter of 2019, up by £100 million on the same time last year.

More than 28,000 homes changed hands during the quarter, according to the law firm’s Property Monitor report, bringing the total value of sales in 2019 to £13.3 billon so far.

Aberdein Considine said that with average quarterly increases during 2019 of almost 3.5%, another similar uplift in the final quarter would mean sales reaching close to £19 billion.

Q4 rises for both 2018 and 2017 were 7.7% and 3.3% respectively.

However, the latest figures come against a backdrop of increasing anxiety over the impact the UK’s exit from the EU will have on the value of homes.

A major poll of homeowners carried out by the law firm shows that 50% of Scots fear their property will decrease in value if the UK leaves the EU.

Jacqueline Law, managing partner at Aberdein Considine said: “There has, over the third quarter of the year, been a sharp increase in the number of Scots who fear that Brexit will result in the value of their home decreasing.

“This is perhaps unsurprising given the Prime Minister’s no deal-brinkmanship throughout the month of October, combined with warnings from the Bank of England Governor on the damage no deal would do, particularly to the housing market.

“There is clearly homeowner anxiety around Brexit, but this has yet to be reflected in sales figures, perhaps due to the greater public having little idea what Brexit will actually look like.

“With another extension in place, we would expect to see these fears ease in Q4 as a new Parliament is elected.

“The make-up of that parliament will have a big say on what market sentiment will be going into Q1 of next year.”