A LEADING independent firm of Scottish solicitors and estate agents has navigated political and economic unrest to sell a record £174m-worth of homes.
Lindsays has revealed a second successive year of sales totalling in excess of £170m through its residential property teams based in Edinburgh, Dundee and Perth during 2023.
The total has been hailed a significant success for the firm in the face of what it describes as a “long hangover” from former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s emergency budget of 2022 and of the nervousness caused by rising interest rates and the cost of living.
Lindsays also warned that politicians north and south of the border should be aware of the impact their decisions have on people and property.
Maurice Allan, Managing Director of Lindsays’ Residential Property team, said: “These figures are a significant success for us, especially given the turbulence we saw in the market during the first half of the year.
“The consequences of political decisions have a real impact on peoples’ lives and can be long-lasting. We saw that with the emergency budget and the long hangover which followed for the property sector. It took time for people to work out what the impact of all of that was on their finances – and many delayed making offers on properties as a result, practically shutting down the market.
“Yet, over the course of the rest of the year, the market has proven to be fairly resilient. Supply has improved – and good houses continue to sell well. People have adapted to the financial circumstances and regained the confidence to get back into the market.
“We’re not seeing the huge offer prices over valuation that we were post-lockdown, but what we have essentially seen over the past 12 months is a market which has returned to pre-pandemic levels, which is not a bad place to be.”
The total number of property sales during the year was also broadly in line with the previous 12 months – with the average price of homes sold through the firm up in Edinburgh up by about 1.5% to £330,000.
And, looking forward, there are hopes of a more stable market during the next 12 months.
Mr Allan added: “While it’s always difficult to predict what might lie ahead, there are genuine signs of positivity.
“The conversations we are having signal a growing belief that interest rates have peaked. With things more stable, many of those who have been sitting on their hands because interest rates were going up and up are now starting to think seriously about doing something in 2024.”
Of the properties sold by Lindsays during 2023, £106.3m were through the firm’s Edinburgh-based team – who operate mainly throughout the capital and the Lothians – with a further £67.9m through its Dundee-based team, who deal with properties across the city, Angus and Perthshire.
Lindsays expanded during the year following its biggest merger to-date, with Miller Hendry, which brought its estate agency services in Perth, Dundee and Crieff into the operations.