Housing market banishes Brexit blues

With temperatures rocketing in the capital, property market activity among both buyers and sellers are only continuing to hit record levels.

According to Warners Solicitors & Estate Agents, activity in Edinburgh is at its highest since the ‘credit crunch’, and shows few signs of slowing down despite the prospect of Brexit.

Between January and March, Warners recorded over 250 property sales – an annual increase of over 40% compared to the same period in 2018 – and brought almost 300 properties to the market.

David Marshall, operations director with Warners, said: ‘There had been a feeling that activity in the local property market would be subdued in the early part of 2019 as people were expected to wait and see the outcome of Brexit negotiations before deciding to buy or sell. This has not been borne out in reality.

‘The rise in the number of homes coming onto the market that we have seen has been the greatest improvement in the market over the last two years.

‘In 2016 and 2017 many people were having to delay selling their own home because they couldn’t find a property that they wanted to buy.

‘As more homes have become available it has made this problem far less common. Buyers are more often able to find a home that they want, while most sellers are still able to sell their properties quickly.’

Throughout 2016 and 2017, a significant shortage of homes for sale across Edinburgh and the Lothians led to multiple buyers competing to secure properties. This meant that buyers found themselves having to bid well in excess of the Home Report valuation in order to be successful.

David Marshall, operations director with Warners

The market began to see a steady improvement last year, with Warners observing an 11% rise in the number of new property listings compared to 2017.

Supply has improved further in the first quarter of this year with more sellers willing to take the plunge and get their home onto the market.

As a result, the premiums that buyers are now having to pay are lower than in recent years, with the average premium paid over the Home Report valuation now 3.4%, down from 6.9% in the first three months of 2018.

David added: ‘With the pressure on buyers having eased, house price inflation has also come back down to more manageable levels.

‘The latest figures from ESPC show that the average house price in Edinburgh rose by 1.8% annually during the first quarter, well below the rate of inflation observed during 2017 and 2018.

‘The levels of inflation that we are now seeing are much more sustainable over the longer term so this is good news for the health of the market and, as we move forward, we would expect to see inflation continue in the region of 1-3% for much of 2019.’

Warners Solicitors and Estate Agents is one of Edinburgh’s leading estate agents, operating three property centres throughout the city.

For more information on Warners Solicitors and Estate Agents, visit www.warnersllp.com