The lifting of lockdown has seen a mini-boom in different property markets across Scotland, with some areas seeing extraordinary year-on-year price rises.
Estate agents are reporting unusual and, in some cases, astonishing sales figures from different parts of the country, so much so that it is difficult to distinguish those that might be contributing to some sort of ongoing trend from those that will be looked back on as one-off blips on a chart.
Because we are living through unprecedented times there are no relevant histories worth consulting.
Having recently emerged from a prolonged period of inactivity, many estate agents are still working through a bottleneck of sales, which has had the effect of driving-up prices generally.
Added to that is the Scottish Government’s decision to raise the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) threshold which has further distorted the market positively.
Quite where we will end-up when neither of those has any effect on buying and selling patterns, around next spring, is frankly anyone’s guess, particularly with more job losses likely to occur in coming months.
Further complicating matters is the prospect that, at any time, there could be further national, regional, or local lockdowns, any of which has the potential to significantly impact the market.
One of the first rules of economics, as any schoolboy or girl will tell you, is that uncertainty is bad for markets, leading to people delaying decisions to buy or sell, and that it will consequently drive down prices.
That is not happening in most of Scotland, where people appear to be ignoring wider concerns and going ahead anyway. Perhaps the experience of the Brexit saga has inured them to scare stories about external factors potentially causing the market to crash.
Despite four years of uncertainty and repeated warnings about the threat of a no-deal Brexit, it didn’t happen, and, in many areas, house prices continued to rise.
Consider then what is happening how, even with the added complications of social distancing requirements and the enforced wearing of PPE.
A super-heated market is being reported by many agents with one, six-branch Scottish agency claiming to have sold 150 homes in Dundee, Fife, Angus and Perthshire in July alone.
The average sales price was 4.8% higher than their Home Report value, with some going for more than 10% above, according to the firm.
Another agency reportedly sold a third of the properties it placed on the market within a week of being listed following the re-opening of the Scottish market on June 29.
At Purdie & Co we managed to sell all of the residential properties that were marketed pre lockdown very swiftly after viewings were allowed again.
Meanwhile, asking prices are up again for a third consecutive month across Scotland by 3.6%, which is 0.3% higher than the figure for the UK.
The general rule in today’s housing market appears to be that there are no rules but, so long as property values continue to rise, then most people won’t be worrying.
For more information about properties for sale in your area of Edinburgh, call Purdie & Co on 0131 346 7240, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit https://www.purdiesolicitors.co.uk