North-east sees nearly £1bn of house sales between September and February

Nearly £1 billion worth of house sales were completed in the north-east between September and February, according to figures released by Aberdein Considine.

Official figures complied by the firm using data from Registers of Scotland show that transactions jumped to £12.1 billion between September 2020 and February 2021, compared to £9.3bn in the same six month period in 2019-20.

Figures have revealed a 30% rise in property transactions was recorded across Scotland over the six month period as buyers dashed to take advantage of the land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT) holiday imposed by the Scottish Government.

In an attempt to boost the property market during the pandemic, the Scottish Government raised the threshold at which LBTT would kick in from £145,000 to £250,000.

It meant 80% of purchasers in Scotland paid no tax at all, but the break ended on March 31, meaning anyone buying at more than £250,000 from April 1 onwards had to pay an additional £2,100.

The impact in the north-east alone represented a mini property boom not seen in the region since oil prices last peaked in 2014.

In Aberdeen, transactions increased by 10% to £414m. However, in Aberdeenshire they soared by 44% to £582m, The Press and Journal reports. 

In Dundee, sales were up by 54% to almost £265m, in Perth and Kinross they increased by 48% to £452m, while the rise was by 32% in both Fife and Angus, to £735m and £233m respectively.

There was a 36% surge in Moray to £187m, an increase of 19% to £514m in Highland, while there were rises of 46% to £27m in the Western Isles, of 31% to £30m in Shetland, and of 17% to £40m in Orkney.

Alan Cumming, national estate agency director at Aberdein Considine, said: “The six months between September and February saw a surge in property sales compared to the previous year, and the LBTT holiday coming to an end definitely contributed to increased sales.

“We expect this strong market to continue into the summer months due to increasing confidence from sellers as lockdown restrictions ease and pupils return to school.

“After several years of a market with more than enough stock, we are now starting to see a shortage of good family homes in some areas and we’d urge people thinking of selling to take advantage of the strong market conditions in their favour right now.

“We currently have around 1,200 homes for sale and more than 400 are sitting under offer with a sale agreed, which gives a flavour of how the market is moving.”

On the figures for the Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire areas, he added: “The rise in Aberdeenshire is partly being driven by a wave of buyers from elsewhere relocating to rural areas, Royal Deeside in particular.

“Almost a billion pounds in sales in just six months is no mean feat and highlights the enduring appeal of the area to house-hunters.”

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