Scotland business

Edinburgh enjoys property market boost in last quarter

Edinburgh Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption More properties came on to the market in Edinburgh in the last quarter of 2018

The property market in and around Edinburgh was given a boost in the last quarter of 2018 by more homes coming on to the market.

The capital has seen prices rising faster and higher than other areas of Scotland.

The recent boost in the supply of homes also runs counter to recent evidence of a slowdown.

The figures have been compiled in a review of the year by the Edinburgh Solicitors Property Centre (ESPC).

It found that the average selling price in Edinburgh, the Lothians and Fife rose by 4.9% over 2017, to £242,000. However, there were fluctuations through the year, with the 12-month increase in price slowing in the final quarter of 2018.

The number of homes sold, according to ESPC, dropped in 2018, compared with 2017, by 3.4%. That has been one of the main features of much of the Scottish property market in recent years.

The drop was marked in the second quarter, but there was a 9.2% increase in the final three months compared with the end of 2017.

'Sellers' market'

The increase in properties coming on the market was much clearer, with 24% more properties being listed in October, November and December than the end of 2017.

That made it the strongest fourth quarter since 2007, before the credit crunch.

Some of the strongest price increases were seen among in the north-east of the capital, and Dunfermline prices went up by 8%.

The fastest sales were noted in small, starter flats to the north of the city centre.

Paul Hilton, chief executive of ESPC, said that 2018 remained a sellers' market due to a shortage of properties.

He said: "It appears first time buyers are facing high levels of competition due to strong demand for homes in the city, coupled with a shortage of supply.

"However, the increase in the number of properties coming to market at the end of 2018 may make it easier for first time buyers to procure a property in 2019."

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