May Property Market Insight from Carl Warden, Bell Ingram’s Head of Estate Agency

As the weather begins to improve and the rain starts to taper off, there’s a palpable sense of relief among the farming community. But interestingly, it’s not just farmers who are benefiting from this change – the property market is also experiencing a surge in activity.

According to Carl Warden, Bell Ingram’s Head of Estate Agency, there has been a noticeable uptick in interest in the property market recently. Competitive closing dates and premium prices are becoming more common, indicating a heightened level of competition among buyers. Properties that were listed in the final quarter of 2023 are now quickly going under offer, highlighting the importance of timing in satisfying the current demand.

Says Carl: “Sellers are becoming increasingly aware of the need to stay ahead of the curve in this fast-paced market. More property appraisals are being requested as sellers recognise the importance of being well-prepared before making an offer on a new property.”

However, Carl advises against complacency, emphasising the importance of realistic expectations, explaining: “Despite the buoyant market, it’s crucial for both buyers and sellers to approach transactions with a clear understanding of what is achievable. With the right guidance, though, I believe that everyone can reach their desired outcome.”

One area that Carl highlights as particularly crucial is conveyancing – the legal process of transferring property ownership. He stresses the importance of having a competent solicitor who can navigate the complexities of this process. Regular communication with your solicitor, including requesting progress reports, is essential to ensuring a smooth transaction.

But Carl wants to make it clear that the job of an estate agent doesn’t end once an offer is accepted. Agents play a vital role in facilitating communication between buyers, sellers, and solicitors, helping to resolve any issues that may arise during the transaction.

He concludes: “Looking ahead, I predicts that the Scottish property market will continue to flourish throughout the summer as demand remains high and availability remains limited. So, whether you’re buying or selling, now could be the perfect time to make your move in the market.”

 

Our people

Carl Warden

Carl Warden

Partner
Estate Agency
Tel: 01738 621 121

About: Carl heads up the Residential Estate Agency division for the company and has a proven track record within the Scottish property sector. He has been marketing property in the Perth and Kinross area for over 35 years and has vast and detailed practical experience and knowledge of selling prime residential property: from period homes to contemporary developments. Carl is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. His wider role involves looking after and supporting our Agency teams and colleagues in Oban, Beauly, Ayr and Forfar. Interests: Estate Agency, Market Valuation, Negotiation.

Get in touch

We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

    April Property Market Insight from Carl Warden, Bell Ingram’s Head of Estate Agency

    Last month’s outlook in the property market showed a glimmer of positivity, but one significant issue continues to linger: prospective buyers are hesitating to list their properties. Despite signs of inflation aligning with the Bank of England’s forecasts and the potential stabilisation or even decrease of interest rates in the near future, caution remains the dominant sentiment among buyers.

    The primary concerns revolve around two key areas:

    Buyer Hesitation: Many potential buyers are delaying putting their properties on the market until they find the perfect fit. This reluctance contributes to a stagnant market, where properties remain unsold for extended periods.

    Seller Caution: Understandably, sellers are wary of negotiating or accepting offers from buyers who haven’t yet sold their own properties or begun marketing them. This cautious approach often leads to ‘chain-linked’ sales, where deals fall through and chains break down.

    The question arises: why accept an offer contingent on another sale? Sellers find themselves in a precarious position when they accept such offers, only to withdraw their property from the market and become vulnerable to circumstances beyond their control. The market’s stability hinges on the return of committed buyers and sellers, ensuring confidence and continuity.

    Contrary to popular belief, properties don’t always sell quickly in the current market. While it’s true for some, others may languish for months, necessitating price adjustments to maintain interest.

    Professional guidance remains crucial in navigating this complex market. Estate agents are well-equipped to offer support and expertise, assisting both buyers and sellers in negotiating the uncertainties of the market.

    Looking ahead, despite the challenges, optimism prevails for 2024. Confidence stems from firsthand experiences within the current market dynamics.

    In conclusion, while challenges persist in the property market, opportunities abound for those willing to adapt and seek professional guidance. Let’s strive for a market characterised by confidence and stability as we move forward.

    Our people

    Carl Warden

    Carl Warden

    Partner
    Estate Agency
    Tel: 01738 621 121

    About: Carl heads up the Residential Estate Agency division for the company and has a proven track record within the Scottish property sector. He has been marketing property in the Perth and Kinross area for over 35 years and has vast and detailed practical experience and knowledge of selling prime residential property: from period homes to contemporary developments. Carl is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. His wider role involves looking after and supporting our Agency teams and colleagues in Oban, Beauly, Ayr and Forfar. Interests: Estate Agency, Market Valuation, Negotiation.

    Get in touch

    We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

      Moving day checklist for buyers and sellers

      Moving to a new home can be both exciting and stressful. To ensure a smooth transition, it’s essential to stay organised and plan ahead. Here’s Bell Ingram’s comprehensive moving day checklist tailored for buyers and sellers:

      Before Moving Day:

      Confirm Moving Date: Co-ordinate with your solicitor, estate agent, and removal company to finalise the moving date.

      Notify Utilities: Inform gas, electricity, water, telephone, internet, and TV licensing providers of your move and arrange for disconnection or transfer of services.

      Change of Address: Notify banks, insurance companies, healthcare providers, DVLA, employer, and other relevant parties of your change of address.

      Arrange Removal Services: Book a reputable removal company well in advance. Obtain quotes, confirm the details of the move, and discuss any specific requirements.

      Pack Essentials: Start packing non-essential items early. Label boxes clearly and pack a separate box with essentials for immediate use upon arrival at your new home.

      Redirect Mail: Arrange for mail redirection with the Royal Mail to ensure you receive any post sent to your old address.

      Arrange Parking: If applicable, arrange for parking permits or suspensions to ensure adequate parking space for removal vehicles at both your current and new property.

      Finalise Cleaning: Schedule professional cleaning services for your old property if required. Ensure your new property is clean and ready for your arrival.

      On Moving Day:

      Confirm Removal Details: Double-check arrangements with the removal company, including the arrival time and any specific instructions.

      Pack Essentials Bag: Prepare a bag with essential items such as toiletries, medication, important documents, snacks, and a change of clothes for each family member.

      Utilities Readings: Take final meter readings for gas, electricity, and water at your old property. Record the readings and contact the utility providers to close your accounts.

      Check Property Condition: Conduct a final walkthrough of your old property to ensure everything is in order. Note any damage or issues and inform your solicitor.

      Hand Over Keys: Hand over keys to your old property to your solicitor or estate agent as per arrangements.

      Supervise Removal: Oversee the removal process, ensuring all items are loaded safely and securely onto the removal vehicle.

      Lock Up: Secure all windows and doors at your old property before leaving. Leave spare keys and relevant documents for the new occupants as agreed.

      After Moving Day:

      Unpack Essentials: Upon arrival at your new home, unpack your essentials bag and set up basic amenities such as bedding, toiletries, and kitchen essentials.

      Check Utilities: Verify that gas, electricity, water, and other utilities are connected and functioning correctly at your new property.

      Inspect Property: Conduct an initial inspection of your new home to ensure everything is as expected. Note any issues or concerns and address them promptly.

      Update Address: Update your address with relevant authorities, organisations, and service providers, including banks, insurers, healthcare providers, and the DVLA.

      Settle In: Take time to settle into your new surroundings and familiarise yourself with the local area. Explore nearby amenities, schools, and transportation links as needed.

      Dispose of Packing Materials: Dispose of packing materials responsibly or arrange for recycling or disposal services.

      Thank Your Removal Company: If satisfied with their service, consider leaving a positive review or providing feedback to your removal company.

      By following this comprehensive moving day checklist, you can ensure a smooth and stress-free transition to your new home. Happy moving!

      Our people

      Joanne Stennett

      Joanne Stennett

      Associate
      Estate Agency
      Tel: 01463 717 799

      About: Joanne heads up the Estate Agency team in our Beauly office and is focused on ensuring her clients have a positive experience when they list their property with Bell Ingram. From country houses to farms and estates, she has been marketing prime residential property in the Highlands and Islands for over 17 years. Joanne is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. Interests: Residential Estate Agency, Rural Property Sales.

      Get in touch

      We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

        Enhance your property’s value with a Spring makeover

        Many homeowners are seizing the opportunity to breathe new life into their properties this Spring, not only to celebrate the season but also to boost their home’s value ahead of listing it for sale. With longer days and a renewed sense of energy, springtime presents the perfect moment to embark on transformative home improvements. From refreshing interiors to enhancing curb appeal, here are some inspired ideas to elevate your property’s worth.

        Garden Revival:

        As nature awakens from its winter slumber, focus on rejuvenating your outdoor space to create a welcoming oasis for potential buyers. Consider investing in landscaping projects such as planting colourful flowers, trimming hedges, and revitalising lawns. Installing outdoor lighting or adding a cozy seating area can also enhance the appeal of your garden, making it an attractive feature for buyers seeking a tranquil retreat.

        Fresh Coat of Paint:

        Give your home a vibrant makeover with a fresh coat of paint, both indoors and outdoors. Opt for light, neutral tones to create an airy, spacious feel that appeals to a wide range of tastes. Painting doors, trims, and window frames can also add a polished finish, boosting your home’s curb appeal and leaving a lasting impression on potential buyers.

        Kitchen Refurbishment:

        The kitchen is often considered the heart of the home, so investing in its renovation can significantly increase your property’s value. Consider updating countertops, cabinets, and appliances to create a modern, functional space that will appeal to discerning buyers. Adding stylish fixtures, such as pendant lights or a sleek backsplash, can further enhance the aesthetic appeal of your kitchen, making it a standout feature of your home.

        Bathroom Upgrades:

        Upgrade your bathrooms with modern fixtures, such as rainfall showerheads, freestanding bathtubs, or vanity units with ample storage. Consider replacing outdated tiles or refreshing grout to give your bathrooms a fresh, clean look. Adding luxury touches, such as heated floors or spa-like features, can also elevate the overall ambiance and value of your home.

        Energy-Efficient Improvements:

        Incorporate energy-efficient upgrades into your home to not only reduce utility bills but also appeal to environmentally conscious buyers. Consider installing double-glazed windows, upgrading insulation, or investing in smart home technology, such as programmable thermostats or energy-efficient appliances. Highlighting these features can demonstrate your home’s sustainability credentials and enhance its marketability.

        Declutter and Depersonalise:

        Before showcasing your home to potential buyers, take the opportunity to declutter and depersonalise your living spaces. Clear out excess belongings, streamline furniture arrangements, and remove personal items to create a clean, clutter-free environment that allows buyers to envision themselves living in the space. Consider staging rooms with neutral decor and strategically placed accents to highlight your home’s potential and appeal to a broad audience.

        Outdoor Entertaining Spaces:

        With warmer weather on the horizon, capitalise on outdoor entertaining spaces to create additional living areas that extend the functionality of your home. Consider adding a deck, patio, or outdoor kitchen that provides a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor living. Investing in features such as fire pits, pergolas, or built-in seating can create a welcoming atmosphere for gatherings and enhance the overall appeal of your property.

        Our people

        Carl Warden

        Carl Warden

        Partner
        Estate Agency
        Tel: 01738 621 121

        About: Carl heads up the Residential Estate Agency division for the company and has a proven track record within the Scottish property sector. He has been marketing property in the Perth and Kinross area for over 35 years and has vast and detailed practical experience and knowledge of selling prime residential property: from period homes to contemporary developments. Carl is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. His wider role involves looking after and supporting our Agency teams and colleagues in Oban, Beauly, Ayr and Forfar. Interests: Estate Agency, Market Valuation, Negotiation.

        Get in touch

        We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

          Scottish Government introduces new land reform legislation with major implications for landowners

          On 13th March 2024, the Scottish Government introduced the Land Reform (Scotland) Bill. The aim of this Bill is to reform the law around large landholdings and certain types of leases of land. The controversial Bill includes measures for landholding over 1,000 hectares including potentially prohibiting the sale of the land until Ministers have been consulted and the impact on the local community assessed.

          Landholdings of over 1,000 hectares account for over 50% of Scotland’s land so this Bill could potentially have drastic effects on how land is managed. If a sale of a landholding over 1,000 hectares is deemed by the ministers to have a negative impact on local communities, the land could be divided into smaller portions. This would allow for communities to purchase smaller land areas and provide opportunities for other parties who would not be able to purchase land otherwise to have the chance of land ownership.

          To tackle climate change and reach net zero, many landowners throughout the country have started work on peatland restoration projects, woodland creation, riparian woodland and more regenerative and environmentally friendly farming practices. If large landholdings are broken down into smaller parcels, there is a risk that these current cohesive and large scale projects will be slowed due to minister intervention and the requirement for agreements to be made between multiple landowners. This will potentially slow down the progress that is already being made to reach net zero.

          The Bill also puts legal responsibilities on landowners to demonstrate how their land is being used to address public policy priorities, contributing to nature restoration and reducing the impact climate change. Many landowners are already managing their land in a way to address these issues already. There will be the requirement for landowners to engage with local communities about how they use the land.

          The Bill also sheds light on a proposed new tenancy model called a “Land Management Tenancy” which the Ministers will publish, this is to support tenancy to manage the land within their tenancies in ways that meet their needs as well as the nation’s. Measures are also included to reform tenant farming, increase sustainability and productivity and to compensate tenants at the end of their agreements for their investment of time and resources.

          The Bill can be read in full here.

          The Scottish Government has also published the report on the findings of a consultation held as part of a Strategic Environmental Assessment of agricultural tenancies, small landholdings and land management tenancy proposals. Within this report it is stated that many respondents noted that there needs to be a balance between tenants’ rights and landlords’ long term security. The respondents have also stated that further guidance and consultation is needed regarded a new tenancy model.

          The report and findings can be read here.

          Our people

          Hamish Hope

          Hamish Hope

          Surveyor, MRICS
          Land Management
          Tel: 01463 717 799

          About: Hamish is an experienced RICS Chartered Surveyor and Registered Valuer, working across the Highlands with a focus on rural estate management from traditional sporting estates to diversifications. He is a graduate of Edinburgh Napier University with MSc Real Estate Management and Investment. Interests: Estate Management, Sales & Lettings, Valuations, Domestic Energy Assessments.

          Get in touch

          We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

            Important Update: Changes in Scotland’s Private Rented Sector

            Since September 2022, there have been regulations in place to control rent increases and safeguard against evictions for privately let residential properties, established under the Cost of Living (Tenant Protection) (Scotland) Act 2022. However, effective April 1st, 2024, these restrictions, including the 3% rent increase cap, will be lifted.

            To mitigate the risk of significant rent hikes, pending parliamentary approval, the process for rent adjudication will be temporarily adjusted for one year, starting April 1st, 2024. This adjustment aims to provide a fair approach to resolving rent disputes during this transitional period.

            Here’s what landlords need to know about rent reviews in April:

            Private residential tenants can dispute a rent increase, with disputes reviewed by Rent Service Scotland or the First-tier Tribunal.

            Rent will be determined based on the lowest of three figures: the open market rate, the rent requested by the landlord, and a comparator based on the difference between the market rate and the current rate.

            Proposed regulations necessitate the use of a rent taper formula if a tenant applies for rent adjudication:

            *If the rent increase is 6% or less than the market rent, the landlord can increase the rent by the proposed amount.

            *If the gap between the market rent and the current rent exceeds 6%, the landlord can increase it by 6% plus 0.33% for each percent that the gap exceeds 6%. The total rent increase cannot exceed 12%.

            Read the Rent Adjudication (Temporary Modifications)(Scotland) Regulations 2024 here..

            As demand for rented property rises, many privately let properties with existing tenants now have below-market rent due to the 3% cap in place since 2022. This is likely to lead to widespread rent increases across the country, although the full impact on the market remains to be seen.

            Before these restrictions are lifted, further changes are set to take effect on March 1st, 2024, with new measures being added to the Repairing Standard, which applies to all privately let residential properties and Short Term Lets. These include:

            *Safe Kitchens

            *Fixed Heating System

            *Safe Access to Common Parts

            *Consent to Work on Common Parts

            *Safe and Secure Common Doors

            *Residual Current Devices

            *Properties must be free of lead pipes, or a water quality test must be carried out.

            *Other fuels, such as oil installations, must meet the same repair standards as gas and electricity installations.

            For full information regarding the changes to the Repairing Standard, click here. While many properties will already meet these additional requirements, there is a risk, primarily to older tenancies, that may not meet the new requirements, necessitating additional works.

            For further discussions on how these changes affect your property, please contact our professional letting agents at Bell Ingram.

            Our people

            Hamish Hope

            Hamish Hope

            Surveyor, MRICS
            Land Management
            Tel: 01463 717 799

            About: Hamish is an experienced RICS Chartered Surveyor and Registered Valuer, working across the Highlands with a focus on rural estate management from traditional sporting estates to diversifications. He is a graduate of Edinburgh Napier University with MSc Real Estate Management and Investment. Interests: Estate Management, Sales & Lettings, Valuations, Domestic Energy Assessments.

            Get in touch

            We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

              Navigating the Realities of Island Property Market: Insights from the West Coast of Scotland

              I’m often told, “You have one of the best jobs in the world!” This exclamation usually comes from holidaymakers, particularly during smooth ferry crossings on bright, sunny days while traveling between picturesque islands along the West Coast of Scotland.  However, I often respond with a dose of reality, explaining the logistical and weather challenges of commuting during the winter months.

              Living and working on the West Coast of Scotland is truly remarkable. Many clients relocate to this region for a change of lifestyle, seeking a more relaxed way of life amidst its stunning landscapes.

              But while the demand for properties in accessible areas remains steady year-round, commuting to more remote areas can be challenging, especially in winter. These remote regions typically experience a slowdown in the property market from October, followed by a surge of listings in the spring. This trend continues into 2024, with my schedule already filled with travel plans to Islay, Jura, Lismore, and recently completing property appraisals on the Isle of Coll.

              The Isle of Mull stands out as one of the most accessible islands on the West Coast, boasting three dedicated ferry routes from the mainland. As a resident of Mull, I’m well-positioned to respond to market demands and have stayed busy with both property appraisals and viewings throughout the winter months.

              However, the sale of development plots in the region has faced challenges over the past 18 months. This is partly attributed to the lingering effects of Covid and the subsequent rise in material costs, prompting some clients to reconsider their building plans. Fortunately, there’s a resurgence in self-build confidence, with several clients eager to pursue their dream homes in the area. In fact, the last plot we listed on Mull received an offer within six hours of hitting the market!

              Several external factors have also influenced the property market dynamics in recent months. In April 2023, there was an increase in additional dwelling supplement tax, a topic that’s increasingly discussed within the second home market, traditionally a robust sector across the West Coast.

              In addition, landlords must now obtain a licence before operating letting properties, a requirement that has led to the listing of several long-standing letting properties in recent months, mainly due to landlords looking to retire.

              Despite these developments, I remain optimistic about the upcoming year. I firmly believe in the enduring charm of the West Coast of Scotland and encourage anyone interested in buying or selling in the region to reach out to us to discuss their needs.

              The experienced team at Bell Ingram Oban has amassed exceptional local property knowledge over the years. We take pride in offering professional market advice to both buyers and sellers alike.

              Our people

              Andrew Fuller

              Andrew Fuller

              Senior Associate
              Estate Agency
              Tel: 01631 566 122

              About: Andrew heads up the Estate Agency team in our Oban office and is focused on ensuring his clients have a first-class experience when they list their property with Bell Ingram. A resident of the Isle of Mull, Andrew is very well known across the West Coast of Scotland and has developed an excellent reputation for marketing prime residential property, including plots, crofts, island homes and lifestyle opportunities. Andrew joined Bell Ingram following almost 15 years managing several high-level private and commercial development projects in the United Arab Emirates. Interests: Residential Estate Agency, Rural Property Sales.

              Get in touch

              We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

                Surging Demand for Island Properties as Rural Living Trend Continues: Insights from Joanne Stennett from Bell Ingram Highland

                Forecasting market performance is always difficult, but with inflation stabilising and mortgage rates steadying, it would be surprising not to see a resurgence of trust and certainty in the Highlands & Islands property market for 2024.

                The first quarter of the year is looking promising and this should continue into the Spring which ordinarily sees an influx of both purchasers and sellers who have been biding their time until the weather improves for viewings.

                Scotland’s Highlands & Islands have always attracted buyers from bigger towns and cities looking for a better standard of living in a less populated area and changes to the way people can now work has also helped the region with many people relocating since Covid, provided of course that they have a good broadband connection.

                It’s unsurprising that in our region, homes with sea views and some land remain the most coveted. Regardless of the economic climate, we anticipate these properties will consistently generate high demand and fetch excellent sale prices.

                Interestingly, demand for Island properties is unseasonably high and the desire to move to more remote locations seems to be continuing. However, the reasons why people chose to move still remain whether they are up-sizing or down-sizing, job relocation or just a simple desire to live a more rural lifestyle.

                Like my colleagues in other parts of Scotland, I haven’t noticed any reductions in valuations within Home Reports. But I have observed that potential premiums above the asking price have decreased, aligning more closely with the values stated in the Home Report.

                Persistently low stock levels also continue to challenge the market, primarily due to sellers hesitating to list their properties until they’ve secured a new home or attempted to buy one contingent upon selling their current home.

                But looking ahead, there’s plenty of reasons to be cheerful, especially in the Inverness area, mainly due to the progress of the Inverness and Cromarty Firth Green Freeport. This initiative is gaining momentum, and it’s estimated that it could potentially generate 10,000 jobs in the vicinity of Inverness, Ardersier, and Invergordon/Nigg.

                In conclusion, I anticipate that house prices will remain stable, and in retrospect, 2024 will be regarded as the new standard for a ‘normal’ year, marking the first such year since 2019.

                Our people

                Joanne Stennett

                Joanne Stennett

                Associate
                Estate Agency
                Tel: 01463 717 799

                About: Joanne heads up the Estate Agency team in our Beauly office and is focused on ensuring her clients have a positive experience when they list their property with Bell Ingram. From country houses to farms and estates, she has been marketing prime residential property in the Highlands and Islands for over 17 years. Joanne is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. Interests: Residential Estate Agency, Rural Property Sales.

                Get in touch

                We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

                  Navigating Scotland’s 2024 Property Market: Insights from Carl Warden, Bell Ingram’s Head of Estate Agency

                  Since I am frequently asked: “How is the property market?” I felt it was important to make comment early in 2024.

                  In the first quarter of the year, Scotland’s property market is typically dependent upon weather conditions as people gear themselves up for the Spring market.

                  There’s been a reasonably brisk start to 2024 as both buyers and sellers have begun to adjust their mindset and become accustomed to the changes that they have witnessed in the market in 2023.

                  Regrettably, many sellers aim for the highest possible price, often seeking a premium above the Home Report value. Conversely, buyers seek to negotiate significant discounts. These vastly differing approaches often result in a challenging path towards reaching a deal.

                  One prominent challenge in the market is the persistently low stock levels, primarily due to sellers hesitating to list their properties until they’ve secured a new home or attempted to buy one contingent upon selling their current home.

                  As Agents, we cannot advise our clients to take their property off the market while they wait for potential buyers to sell their own properties. This approach is fraught with risks and potential complications, contributing to a market that mirrors the English-style of selling, characterised by chains that are prone to breaking.

                  I haven’t observed any reductions in valuations within Home Reports. However, we’ve noticed that potential premiums above the asking price have decreased, aligning more closely with the values stated in the Home Report.

                  Monitoring demand proves challenging amidst the persistently low supply. However, the motivations driving people to move—whether it’s upsizing, downsizing, job relocation, or a desire for a more rural lifestyle—remain unchanged. Hence, I would confidently assert that demand remains robust for the right style of properties.

                  Purchasers have now reverted back to being more particular about their exacting requirements and this is a reflection of the market being less competitive than 2022 and 2023. The outlook for the year ahead is a simple case of the market readjusting to the new conditions and accepting that the cost-of-living crisis, food prices and interest rates have all increased around them. However, one of the most important things in life is the surroundings in which people live and their family home. I am therefore confident that although properties may not sell as quickly as initially anticipated, a successful sale will still be achieved in a reasonable time-frame.

                  Our people

                  Carl Warden

                  Carl Warden

                  Partner
                  Estate Agency
                  Tel: 01738 621 121

                  About: Carl heads up the Residential Estate Agency division for the company and has a proven track record within the Scottish property sector. He has been marketing property in the Perth and Kinross area for over 35 years and has vast and detailed practical experience and knowledge of selling prime residential property: from period homes to contemporary developments. Carl is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. His wider role involves looking after and supporting our Agency teams and colleagues in Oban, Beauly, Ayr and Forfar. Interests: Estate Agency, Market Valuation, Negotiation.

                  Get in touch

                  We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

                    People make Inverness one of the happiest places to live in Scotland

                    Inverness was among the happiest places to live in Scotland during 2023.

                    Each year online property portal Rightmove asks people to share what makes them happy about where they live, and what they believe makes it special. Its Happy at Home Index, now in its 12th year, surveyed 26,000 people across the UK to gauge their opinion of their area based on 13 happiness factors.

                    From residents’ sense of pride and belonging to the local services and amenities on offer, Rightmove then pulled together a list of the happiest places to live in the UK based on the scores people gave their local area.

                    For the second year in a row Galashiels took the top spot as the “happiest” place to live in Scotland, with Inverness following a close second.

                    According to the survey, it’s often less tangible things such as community spirit as well as a sense of belonging which contribute toward people’s opinions of their homes, though for 2023 living near green spaces and natural beauty was another highlight.

                    Commenting on the survey, Joanne Stennett from Bell Ingram’s Highland office said: “My family were lucky enough to relocate to the area 12 years ago from the West Coast. I must say it is the best move we have ever made. We have beaches and mountains within easy reach as well as lochs for swimming and bike tracks in the forests. The airport also allows us to fly to various destinations within the UK and abroad.”

                    But it’s not just the friendly locals that makes the region worth visiting, Inverness offers a host of appealing factors that make it an attractive location for homebuyers.

                    Natural Beauty and Tranquil Lifestyle: Inverness-shire is known for its stunning natural landscapes, featuring dramatic mountains and picturesque lochs. If you value a low stress lifestyle and appreciate the beauty of the outdoors, buying a home in Inverness-shire provides the opportunity to enjoy these scenic surroundings daily. The region offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of urban life.

                    Outdoor Recreation Opportunities: Inverness-shire is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you enjoy hiking, golfing, biking, fishing, or water sports, the region provides a plethora of recreational opportunities. Having a home in Inverness-shire means easy access to walking trails, and various outdoor activities, contributing to a healthy and active lifestyle.

                    Rich Cultural Heritage and History: Inverness-shire has a rich historical and cultural heritage, with landmarks, castles, and museums that showcase its fascinating past.

                    Community Atmosphere: Many towns and villages in Inverness-shire and surrounding areas offer a strong sense of community. Buying a home in such an area can provide a supportive and welcoming environment. Local events, festivals, and community activities foster a sense of belonging, making it easier to connect with neighbours and build lasting relationships.

                    Quality of Life and Amenities: Inverness-shire provides a high quality of life with a good balance of modern amenities and a peaceful atmosphere. Inverness offers shopping centres, schools, healthcare facilities, and other essential services, ensuring that residents have access to everything they need. Additionally, the region’s well-maintained infrastructure contributes to a comfortable living experience.

                    Before making a decision to buy a home, it’s crucial to consider factors such as your personal preferences, lifestyle, and long-term goals. Conducting thorough research and potentially visiting the area can help you make an informed choice that aligns with your needs and aspirations.

                     

                     

                    Our people

                    Joanne Stennett

                    Joanne Stennett

                    Associate
                    Estate Agency
                    Tel: 01463 717 799

                    About: Joanne heads up the Estate Agency team in our Beauly office and is focused on ensuring her clients have a positive experience when they list their property with Bell Ingram. From country houses to farms and estates, she has been marketing prime residential property in the Highlands and Islands for over 17 years. Joanne is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. Interests: Residential Estate Agency, Rural Property Sales.

                    Get in touch

                    We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

                      Visitors rank Scotland’s most desirable locations – and Mull tops the list

                      Looking for your next move? Office space consultancy Freeofficefinder.com has ranked the most desirable places to live in Scotland using the number of views each location received on TikTok – and Mull tops the list!

                      With more and more people working from home these days, relocating to a picturesque Scottish island offers open green spaces, good for the soul, a space to boost mental health, a place to spend more quality time with family while at work.

                      Mull is a spectacular island, a wonderful place for those looking to escape a high-paced lifestyle. To the north of the island, Tobermory is famous for its colourful painted houses, a picturesque coastal town with a thriving social scene. Heading further south, the Ross of Mull offers stunning coastal views, where pink granite rocks meet crystal clear seas, creating a dramatic landscape.

                      Mull Property Expert Andrew Fuller, Bell Ingram Oban, explains, “I’ve been living on the Isle of Mull since 2016, having spent a lot of my childhood holidays exploring the island. It truly is a wonderful place to live and work, with plenty of community events and activities to get involved with. I’m able to guide clients who are looking to relocate to Mull, offering advice on the many quirks of island living.

                      “Employment opportunities are regularly advertised on the island, however we also seeing many clients opting to work from home, the perfect work/life balance. Families moving to Mull will find good educational options for their children, with several primary schools located around island, and a high school in Tobermory. There is also a property type to suit every budget, from one-bedroom coastal flats to grand estate houses.

                      “Most properties in this area offer incredible value when compared to other regions in the UK. The leisurely pace of life and the breathtaking surroundings combine to create a tapestry of adventures, making every single moment truly worthwhile.”

                      But it’s not just mesmerising views and astonishing wildlife that makes the Scotland’s islands worth visiting, both Mull and Islay in particular offer a raft of appealing factors that make them an attractive location for homebuyers. Here are five reasons to consider trying island life:

                      Scenic Beauty: Mull is known for its breathtaking landscapes, including rugged coastlines, rolling hills, and picturesque lochs. The island is home to diverse wildlife, including sea eagles, seals, and otters. If you appreciate natural beauty and tranquillity, buying a house in Mull allows you to immerse yourself in stunning surroundings.

                      Outdoor Recreation: Mull provides abundant opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, birdwatching, and water sports. With numerous trails, coastal paths, and waterways to explore, residents can enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle in a pristine natural environment.

                      Island Community: Mull has a close-knit and welcoming community. If you’re looking for a place where people know each other, and there’s a strong sense of community spirit, Mull might just be the ideal location. The welcoming population contributes to a friendly atmosphere and a sense of belonging.

                      Rich History and Culture: Mull has a rich history, with ancient castles, archaeological sites, and traditional Scottish culture. Living in Mull allows you to immerse yourself in the local history and traditions, providing a unique and enriching cultural experience.

                      Escape from Urban Life: If you’re seeking a peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of city life, Mull offers a serene escape. With a slower pace of life, clean air, and minimal light pollution, you can enjoy a more relaxed and laid-back lifestyle on the island.

                      Keep in mind that while Mull has its unique charm, it’s essential to thoroughly research the practical aspects of island living, such as transportation, amenities, and local services, before making a decision to relocate.

                      Here are the seven “most desirable places to live” in Scotland according to the research.

                      Isle of Mull, Argyll and Bute

                      Braemar, Aberdeenshire

                      Craigellachie, Moray

                      Isle of Islay, Argyll and Bute

                      Killearn, Stirling

                      Gullane, East Lothian

                      Elie, Fife

                      *Source Freeofficefinder.com

                      Contact Andrew, Laura or Mairi to arrange your no obligation market appraisal. Tel: 01631 566 122 or oban@bellingram.co.uk

                      Our people

                      Andrew Fuller

                      Andrew Fuller

                      Senior Associate
                      Estate Agency
                      Tel: 01631 566 122

                      About: Andrew heads up the Estate Agency team in our Oban office and is focused on ensuring his clients have a first-class experience when they list their property with Bell Ingram. A resident of the Isle of Mull, Andrew is very well known across the West Coast of Scotland and has developed an excellent reputation for marketing prime residential property, including plots, crofts, island homes and lifestyle opportunities. Andrew joined Bell Ingram following almost 15 years managing several high-level private and commercial development projects in the United Arab Emirates. Interests: Residential Estate Agency, Rural Property Sales.

                      Get in touch

                      We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct

                        Booking.com ranks the most welcoming places on earth – and Perthshire tops the list

                        Looking for your next move? Booking.com has revealed a full list of the most welcoming places in the world – and Perthshire in Scotland takes first place.

                        The ranking by the popular online travel agency placed the county first, with Penghu, Taiwan in second place, followed by Boyacá, Colombia, in third.

                        The list was identified based on the share of accommodation providers receiving a Traveller Review Award 2024* from Booking.com.

                        Perthshire Property Expert Carl Warden, Bell Ingram’s Head of Estate Agency, says: “There are so many attractive features that make Perthshire such a draw for purchasers, many of whom are coming from across the border. The recent lockdown has focussed so much attention on quiet and peaceful locations, with open space and the ability to work remotely. Perth and the surrounding areas are perfect for this and I am delighted to offer so many lovely properties to the market.”

                        But it’s not just friendly locals that makes the region worth visiting, Perthshire offers several appealing factors that make it an attractive location for homebuyers looking for property for sale in Perthshire. Here are five reasons to consider buying a home in what locals call “the Big County”:

                        Natural Beauty and Tranquil Lifestyle:

                        Perthshire is known for its stunning natural landscapes, featuring rolling hills, picturesque lochs, and lush greenery. If you value a tranquil lifestyle and appreciate the beauty of the outdoors, buying a home in Perthshire provides the opportunity to enjoy these scenic surroundings daily. The region offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of urban life.

                        Outdoor Recreation Opportunities:

                        Perthshire is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you enjoy hiking, golfing, fishing, or water sports, the region provides a plethora of recreational opportunities. Having a home in Perthshire means easy access to nature reserves, walking trails, and various outdoor activities, contributing to a healthy and active lifestyle.

                        Rich Cultural Heritage and History:

                        Perthshire has a rich historical and cultural heritage, with landmarks, castles, and museums that showcase its fascinating past. Owning a home in Perthshire means being surrounded by history, giving you the chance to explore and appreciate the region’s heritage. Scone Palace, Blair Castle, and the historic town of Dunkeld are just a few examples of the cultural gems in Perthshire.

                        Community Atmosphere:

                        Many towns and villages in Perthshire offer a strong sense of community. Buying a home in such an area can provide a supportive and welcoming environment. Local events, festivals, and community activities foster a sense of belonging, making it easier to connect with neighbours and build lasting relationships.

                        Quality of Life and Amenities:

                        Perthshire provides a high quality of life with a good balance of modern amenities and a peaceful atmosphere. Cities like Perth offer shopping centres, schools, healthcare facilities, and other essential services, ensuring that residents have access to everything they need. Additionally, the region’s well-maintained infrastructure contributes to a comfortable living experience.

                        Before making a decision to buy a home, it’s crucial to consider factors such as your personal preferences, lifestyle, and long-term goals. Conducting thorough research and potentially visiting the area can help you make an informed choice that aligns with your needs and aspirations.

                        The 10 most welcoming regions on Earth

                        Perthshire, Scotland

                        Penghu, Taiwan

                        Boyacá, Colombia

                        Trentino – Alto Adige, Italy

                        Los Lagos, Chile

                        Erongo, Namibia

                        Otago, New Zealand

                        Lapland, Finland

                        Asturias, Spain

                        Friesland, Netherlands

                        *Source: Booking.com

                        To arrange your no obligation market appraisal, contact Carl Warden on 01738 621 121.

                        Our people

                        Carl Warden

                        Carl Warden

                        Partner
                        Estate Agency
                        Tel: 01738 621 121

                        About: Carl heads up the Residential Estate Agency division for the company and has a proven track record within the Scottish property sector. He has been marketing property in the Perth and Kinross area for over 35 years and has vast and detailed practical experience and knowledge of selling prime residential property: from period homes to contemporary developments. Carl is well known in the local area, having developed excellent relationships with buyers and sellers. His wider role involves looking after and supporting our Agency teams and colleagues in Oban, Beauly, Ayr and Forfar. Interests: Estate Agency, Market Valuation, Negotiation.

                        Get in touch

                        We'd love to hear from you, use the form below to email me direct