Let me start today’s Penicuik Property Blog with an apology and a thanks. Firstly, the apology – apologies for this edition of the blog coming out on a Sunday rather than the normal Thursday. Secondly, thank you to all the concerned readers of the Penicuik Property Blog who got in touch to see if anything was wrong given that the ‘regular as clock work’ Thursday blog was not posted. We are issuing the first edition of the Falkirk Property News shortly to accompany the Falkirk Property Blog that has been going for some time and this has kept me a wee bit busy!
Now, back to important matters – the Penicuik property market.
Penicuik’s continuing housing shortage is putting the town’s (and Scotland’s) repute as a nation of homeowners ‘under threat’, as the number of houses being built continues to be woefully inadequate in meeting the ever demanding needs of the growing population in the town.
In fact, I was talking to some friends the other day at a get together and the subject of the Penicuik Property market came up in the conversation after the weather and politics. It was said that it used to be that if you went out to work and did the right thing, you would expect that relatively quickly you would be buying a house, you would go on holiday every year and you would save for a pension. But now things seem to have changed.
At least 30,000 new homes are needed each year in Scotland to tackle the chronic housing shortage this Country has.
As you can see from the graph above (courtesy of the Office of National Statistics), only 18,285 properties were built in 2015 in Scotland as a whole (split down 12,050 built by private builders, 3,060 built by Housing Associations and a paltry 1,160 council houses). Also, and perhaps more concerning are that facts that the last time we build more than 30,000 homes a year was in 1977 (the year of the punk explosion and the Queen’s silver (yes, silver!) jubilee depending on your taste) and we have only built 21,000 homes per year on average over the last 10 years.
The current Scottish Government is helping – they are committed to see the building of 6,000 homes per year on average and are on track to deliver this. However, this still leaves another 24,000 homes per year to build.
The picture in Penicuik is similar to the Scottish wide trend.
There are simply not enough houses in Penicuik and the shortage of supply has meant Penicuik property values have continued to rise, meaning they are 3.1% higher than 6 months ago.
I was taught at school that it is all about supply and demand, this economics game. The demand for Penicuik property has been particular strong for properties in the good areas of the town and it is my considered opinion that it is likely to continue this year, driven by growing demand among buyers (both Penicuik home buyers and Penicuik landlords alike). You see, Penicuik’s economy is quite varied, meaning activity is expected to remain relatively strong into the early Summer of 2016, especially as some Penicuik buy to let landlords try to complete purchases ahead of the introduction of new Land & Buildings Transaction Tax (stamp duty to you any me!) rules in April.
…and of supply, well we have spoken about the lack of new building in the town holding things back, but there is another issue relating to supply. Of the existing properties already built, the concern is the number of properties on the market and for sale. The number of properties currently for sale in Penicuik is only 28, whilst 12 months ago this figure was 62 and three years ago it stood at 87… a massive drop!
With demand for Penicuik property rising, minimal new homes being built and less properties coming onto the market, that can only mean one thing, now is a good time to be a homeowner or landlord in Pencuik.