Housing market rebounds in July after Covid shutdown

The nationwide lockdown halted the process of buying and selling property.

Scotland’s housing market welcomed a rebound in July once reopening after the coronavirus pandemic halted the process of buying and selling property.

The latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Residential Market Survey indicated an increase in new buyer enquiries for a net balance of +100% of Scottish respondents while +79% saw a rise in newly agreed sales.

More than two-thirds (+68%) of respondents also reported an increase of new listings, however surveyors remain cautious about the months ahead due to the uncertain economic outlook.

Sales expectations in the latest survey sat at +5% but -31% was recorded for the same figure looking 12 months ahead.

The RICS previously said lockdown measures had impacted the market until reopening with construction workers also not allowed back on sites until the middle of July.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, said: “The strong impetus provided to the housing market is evident both in the results of the RICS survey and many of the anecdotal comments from respondents.

“However, it is interesting that there remains rather more caution about the medium term outlook with the macro environment, job losses and the ending or tapering of government support measures for the sector expected to take their toll.

“Significantly, some contributors are now even referencing the possibility of a boom followed by a bust.

“Meanwhile one of the other notable aspects of the survey is the feedback that there is a greater interest in properties that offer some features that help better manage future lockdowns whether it is access to green spaces, gardens or balconies.”

Alan Kennedy, MRICS of Shepherd Surveyors in Fraserburgh, also said: “Since the property market reopened on June 29 there has been an exceptionally high number of properties coming onto the market and high levels of demand from prospective purchasers, particularly in the low-mid price range.”

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