Highland Property Forecast: Surging Demand for Island Properties as Rural Living Trend Continues

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

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.

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