Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders experienced a material annual rise in property sales volume at 128% from February to April 2021. This may come as no surprise, given stringent lockdown restrictions enforced in March and April last year, however, when looking further back i.e. to February – April 2019, the volume of properties sold was up 35.95%, further demonstrating a high level of activity in the market in the last three months.
Looking at specific areas, Edinburgh saw an increase in sales volume at 152.6% year on year and 36% when compared to February – April 2019. Midlothian recorded a 93.2% annual rise and a 38.9% increase from 2019. Property sales volume in East Lothian was up 86.1% annually and up 33.9% compared to the same period in 2019.
Unsurprisingly, the number of new homes coming to Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders grew considerably compared to last year when Coronavirus restrictions were implemented. An increase of 71.5% was recorded from February to April 2021 across all areas. When compared to the same period in 2019, the volume of new homes coming to market was up only by 0.8%, highlighting the impact of lockdown on the property market in 2020.
Strong sales figures
Properties in Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders witnessed an 8.9% rise in the average selling price from February to April 2021, with the most notable year on year increase of 15.5% recorded in East Fife, where the average selling price stood at £241,651. This was followed by Midlothian and the Scottish Borders, with a 12% and 9.5% annual increases respectively.
West Fife and Kinross experienced a 5.4% year on year increase, whilst selling prices in East Lothian were up 4.4%, to £266.715. West Lothian’s average selling price was similar compared to the previous year, at an average of £206,240.
The average selling price in Edinburgh stood at £272,488, up 8% compared to the same period last year. Liberton and Gilmerton’s three bedroom houses saw a 23.4% increase, whilst three bedroom houses in Currie, Balerno and Juniper Green recorded a 20.8% rise. The average selling price in Blackhall, Davidsons Mains and Silverknowes continued to fall due to a greater proportion of lower value homes coming to market this year.
From February to April 2021 the average percentage of Home Report valuations achieved in Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders was 102.4%, almost unchanged from last year (102.7%).
Faster time to sell
Over the past three months, the median time to sell across Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders was 25 days, two days faster compared to the previous year. With the exception of the capital city itself, where the median time to sell increased by six days to 28 days, all other areas witnessed a decrease in the median time to sell. The biggest drop of 22 days (from 39 to just 17), was recorded in East Lothian, with West Lothian and the Borders experiencing a fall in the median time to sale of 20 and 19 days respectively.
Paul Hilton, CEO of ESPC, said: “This has been a busy three months in the local property market, with a high volume of homes selling alongside a reduction in the median time to sell. We’ve been witnessing high levels of activity in the market since the re-opening of the property market last June but the figures this month really highlight the difference this spring compared with last.
“The particularly strong increase in sales in East Lothian and Midlothian perhaps demonstrate the continued spotlight buyers are placing on their next home, perhaps some seeking more room for outdoor space or extra living space.
“We anticipate interest in the property market remaining strong in the coming months, as lockdown measures are eased further with progress to the new normal eagerly anticipated. This could be a good time for people considering a move, and for those thinking about making a move I’d recommend speaking with a solicitor estate agent in the first instance to get the best introduction to the market.”