Scottish housing recovery remains stable

Nia Williams

February 18, 2011

On an annual, underlying basis Scottish house prices have increased by 4.7%.

In the three months ending January 2011, the quarterly price index for the average domestic property in Scotland fell modestly by 0.3%. Following mix adjusting, the average Scottish house price is now £162,119.

As with last quarter’s Monitor, the latest house price movement has been generated from a market with a low number of sales. The number of house purchases recorded in this quarter’s Monitor is 26% down on the last quarter and 29% below the same quarter of last year.

For the market as a whole, Scottish house purchases in December 2010 were 16.5% less than December of the previous year. However, with the number of transactions in the last four months of 2010 largely static, the downward trend appears to have stabilised. The number of housing transactions in the Scottish market is around half of pre-recession levels, however the total for 2010 is 7% up on 2009.

Donald MacRae, chief economist, Lloyds TSB Scotland, said: “The Scottish economy exited recession at the end of 2009. The first quarter of 2010 saw unchanged growth but quarter two recorded robust growth of 1.3% followed by trend growth of 0.5% in the third quarter. Most indicators point to a quarter of nil or low growth for the last three months of last year, driven by low levels of both business and consumer confidence.

“The Scottish housing market has adjusted to the recession with a halving of sales and a period of volatile price movement over the last three years. Average house prices in Scotland now are very close to the levels of 12 months ago. The pattern of quarterly falls followed by quarterly increases to give virtually static house prices over the year looks likely to be repeated during 2011.”

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