Scottish cities lead the way in house price rises
The UK cities with the fastest rising house prices are in Scotland, a new survey has indicated.
According to the latest data from Hometrack, the greatest increase in price over the past 12 months is the 7.9 per cent recorded in Edinburgh, with Glasgow in second on 7.6 per cent. At 3.6 per cent, Glasgow has seen the highest growth of any city over the past three months, although average prices remain a modest £122,000, £98,000 less than Edinburgh.
The best-performing English city, Leicester, is third on 7.5 per cent, just ahead of Birmingham on 7.3 per cent. Manchester, Liverpool, Nottingham and Bristol all saw growth of over six per cent.
Overall, the annual increase in prices was 4.7 per cent, but there were some significant variations. Most notably, Aberdeen's fortunes contrasted starkly with those of Scotland's largest cities, with a drop of 3.7 per cent, making it the only one of the 20 cities surveyed to record a decline. This figure is in line with other surveys and reflects the peculiar situation of the city as its economy has taken a major hit from the sharp plunge in oil prices.
Aberdeen prices also declined over the last three months, something only one other city, Cambridge, has endured. It saw prices dip by one per cent, most of which has been caused by a 0.9 per cent fall in the past month. Over the last year, however, the East Anglian city has still seen price growth, albeit a modest two per cent. Fellow university city Oxford has also had a lean time, being the second worst performer after Aberdeen with prices up only 0.7 per cent in the last year.
Higher prices in some cities may compel people who would prefer to buy to carry on renting as they save, thus providing opportunities for the buy-to-let sector. Investors may therefore wish to keep a keen eye on these trends.
London's increase was a modest 2.7 per cent, confirming that the cooling of a previously hit market has continued. Like Aberdeen, the city is more vulnerable than most to certain economic threats, in the case of the capital that of the City seeing its role as an international financial centre depleted due to Brexit.