Rents rise faster in Edinburgh and the Lothians than the rest of UK

“London is not the only UK capital city with a booming property market…”

Rental properties in Scotland have continued to outperform expectations with prices rising month-on-month and compared to the same point last year, despite uncertainty in both the UK and the wider global economy. A typical property in Scotland now lets for £558 per month.
That’s according to Your Move’s latest Buy to Let Index released today (Friday, 9 December), which also shows that prices in Edinburgh and the Lothians have risen 6.1% in the last year.
Brian Moran, lettings director at Your Move Scotland, said: “Landlords have been thrilled with the performance of Scottish rental properties in recent months, and October again showed how strong this market is.
“This month yields may have fallen but they remain much higher than equivalent properties in England and Wales.
“The big news is the improvement in tenant finances, meaning that fewer landlords are facing problems with late and non payment of rent.
“The excellent performance of the Edinburgh and Lothians region shows that London is not the only UK capital city with a booming property market.”
Key insights about the data
• Rental properties in Scotland continued to outperform expectations in October 2016. Prices rose both month-on-month and compared to the same point last year, despite uncertainty in both the UK and the wider global economy.
• The typical Scottish property now rents for £558 per calendar month (seasonally adjusted), Your Move Scotland found. This figure is 0.3% higher than the previous month and 0.4% up on last October.
Standout performance in the Scottish capital
• The Edinburgh and Lothians region has long been home to the highest rents in Scotland and this month it saw rents rise faster than any other part of the country.
• Prices in the capital city and surrounding area leapt by 6.1% in the last 12 months and were also up 0.9% compared to September. The average rent in this region now stands at £645 per month, Your Move Scotland found.
• It was a mixed picture elsewhere in Scotland. Landlords with properties in the Highlands and Islands continued to enjoy higher than average rents, even though prices have tumbled 8.1% in the last 12 months. The typical property in this area now lets for £576 per month.
• Glasgow and Clyde was close behind with average rents of £573 a month. This figure was down 1% year-on-year and 0.2% versus September’s figure.
• The East of Scotland remains the cheapest place to rent a property, although this region was one of only two areas to see prices grow compared to both last year and last month. The average rent of £528 in October was 0.4% higher than last year and 0.1% up compared to September.
Yields drop back but performing strongly
• Yields may have ticked down between September and October, but still remain highly competitive when compared to both property investment in other parts of the UK and Scottish yields in previous years.
• Rental properties in Scotland typically returned 5% in October 2016, down on the 5.8% recorded in September but still well above the 4% seen a year ago.
• Landlords in Scotland continue to see much better returns than their counterparts in England and Wales, where the average yield in October stood at 4.7%. Only properties in the North East and North West regions of England saw better returns; 5.3% and 5.1%
respectively.
• Despite the fall in yields in Scotland, landlords will be boosted by strong rents in most areas and a fall in the level of arrears across the country.
Arrears levels remain flat
• Tenant arrears have improved dramatically this autumn, Your Move Scotland found. Across all of Scotland some 7.9% of all tenancies had arrears of a day or more in October 2016. This is much lower than the 12.5% figure recorded last month, reflecting the improved state of Scottish tenants’ finances.
• This month’s figure is also much lower than the same point in 2015, when arrears represented 13.8% of all tenancies. October 2016’s figure is the best performance in this survey since the summer of 2015.
• However, Scotland’s arrears rate for this month remains above the level found in England and Wales. Across these two nations the average rate of arrears was 9.3% during October.
• On an absolute basis, the number of Scottish households in serious arrears – defined as two months or more – was 2,926 in October 2016.
• The methodology used to calculate figures in this report is created and reviewed in partnership with Cebr. It is based on analysis of Your Move’s rental properties across Scotland
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