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Landlords – here’s why you should have faith in the Scottish market

Wed 11 Dec 2019

It’s been a tumultuous year for the lettings industry, with Brexit uncertainty disrupting the property market and both landlords and tenants having to adapt to changes brought about by increased legislation.

Despite this, landlords in Scotland are continuing to rent private properties, indicating unyielding confidence in the Scottish sector.

A recent survey from SafeDeposits Scotland revealed that a vast majority (88%) of landlords could see themselves continuing as a landlord for the foreseeable future, while 69% said they have not considered and have no intentions of selling their rental property within the next 12 months.

Of the 108 private sector landlords surveyed, 90% had rented out their properties for three or more years.

The results follow the findings from SafeDeposit Scotland’s tenant survey earlier this year, which found that 30% of tenants in Scotland are not aiming to buy a home, and 71% can see themselves renting for the foreseeable future.

With this in mind, we outline why Scotland remains an ideal investment hotspot for buy-to-let landlords and investors.

Yields and rents on the rise

For another year running, landlords in Scotland are enjoying higher returns and stability in the buy-to-let market, seeing a 4.2% increase in average rental values in October 2019 compared to October 2018, at £674 per month.

In Edinburgh and the Lothians – where Letting Solutions operates – annual growth of 1.9%  to May 2019 took the average rent to £689.

Landlords are continuing to see strong returns as yields remained at their highest level since November 2018, increasing from 4.6% to 4.7%. This means investor returns continue to compare favourably to England and Wales.

As a result, many agents are anticipating a steady increase with the buy-to-let market going forward.

Investing in West Lothian

With its affordable house prices and diverse range of property – from traditional stone properties to modern developments – it’s no wonder the historic county is continuing to attract family tenants.

In fact, the number of families living in Scottish rented accommodation overall has hit the 90,000 mark, representing around a quarter of the sector.

For landlords looking to invest in new properties here, the average price for property in West Lothian stands at around £185,000 – a rise of 0.73% in the last three months and a rise of 1.95% since last year.

Overall sold prices in West Lothian over the last year were 4% up on the previous year and 12% up on the 2015 level of £160,000.

In terms of property types, flats currently sell for an average of £120,000 and terraced houses go for around £130,000, Zoopla estimates.

The main areas of West Lothian also have loads to offer, with Armadale offering stunning scenery, Bath Gate great for food and drink, Fauldhouse ideal for cycling and Livingston – the largest town – a perfect place for shopping.

With continued confidence in the Scottish private rented sector, landlords can rest assured that their returns will remain strong going into 2020 and beyond.

Here at Letting Solutions, we can provide advice to landlords on how to make the most from their rental properties. For more information, please give us a call on 01506 496006.

Additionally, you can request a free and instant online valuation to give you an idea of how much you could be charging in rent each month.

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