Rural Scotland stealing the hearts of top end international property buyers

Midwinter in the Scottish countryside is not normally associated with a buoyant property market, yet during the past month there has been a spike in the number of international viewers to Scottish top end country properties.

This is despite limited daylight hours, cold weather, and the impact of political uncertainty being experienced elsewhere in the UK property market.

Jamie Macnab, head of Savills country homes department in Scotland, said: “Almost 30 per cent of our buyers in recent weeks have been from outside the UK. We are not simply talking about window shoppers viewing Sottish country properties online. These are genuine buyers from all over the world who have booked flights to some of our most aspirational properties all over Scotland including castles, estates, country houses and the very exclusive Hamilton Grand which overlooks the famous Old Course in St Andrews.

“The list of countries looks a bit like a world tour and includes buyers from all over Europe, as well as Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Cayman Islands, Singapore, South Africa, Australia, Canada and America. Over the past couple of years we have seen a spike in those coordinating country property viewings with Christmas visits to Scottish friends and family, but the international viewer trend, at the top end of the market, has been particularly strong over the past month with 50% coming from outside Scotland and a third being international.”

According to Savills, the international trend has been supported by the exchange rate, value for money, and comparative affordability compared to Edinburgh, London and the South of England.

Mr Macnab said: “Scotland, with its spectacular scenery and exceptional quality of life, has enduring appeal for international buyers. Not only is ‘Scotland’ the most searched for term on Savills UK website, the number of web hits to Scottish properties grew by a further 5 per cent in December.”