Culture And Affordability Cause Property Values Soar In Edinburgh

Apart from the climate, Edinburgh has a lot going for it and it looks like it’s only going to get better.

By Jeff Vasishta January 9, 2017

It’s not all cold north of the border. No, I don’t mean Canada. I’m taking about Scotland—in particular, its capital Edinburgh. The housing market in some parts of it is hitting pre-recession highs.

In London, the average price of an Edinburgh home—£231,103 (or $283,855)—could hardly buy you a garden shed. However, the price is up 1.9 percent on the previous year, according to U.K. house monitor, the Land Registry. In Edinburgh city center, things get positively balmy where demand is at all time high.

“People are looking predominantly in the city center rather than the suburbs,” Ben Fox director of Savills Edinburgh told the Wall Street Journal. “I think there is a feeling it is a safer place to invest, and people like to be close to work and all the amenities of the city center.”

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Despite cheaper prices in the suburbs, in some of the most exclusive center districts, a classic Georgian townhouse costs around $2 million plus. The Wall Street Journal mentions a five-bedroom on India Street listed for $2.76 million. A million dollars also buys you a luxury four-bedroom house with a backyard in the same neighborhood.

Despite the relatively affordable prices for a top-notch European cultural city, the Journal reports that 80 percent of the city’s buyers are locals. The rest are coming from England. In light of Scotland’s overwhelming anti-Brexit vote, it now has a particular appeal to many south of the border.

It’s not just politics that attracts the English to Edinburgh. The price makes it a natural draw for people who want to live in a cultural and historic hub without depleting everything they have. Another draw is the fact that Scottish citizens can go to University for free, unlike in England. The city, supported by the Government’s CivTech initiative and Edinburgh University, has become something of a tech center. In 2014 alone the University supported an impressive 44 startups and three spin-outs.

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Edinburgh has also become something of a literary haven. J.K. Rowling lives there and penned most of her Harry Potter novels in the cafes around the city.

The greatest appeal is that Edingburgh is a beautiful, historic city with quick access to the rest of Scotland. If it manages to negotiate an engaged relationship with the rest of Europe, the draw would become even more dramatic.

“There are still a lot of questions over Brexit, but once those things are a little clearer I think there will be a lot of investment in Edinburgh,” Andrew Riddell, associate at Estate Agents told the Journal.

“Companies which find London too expensive will relocate.”

Jeff Vasishta



Jeff is a writer, husband and father but not necessarily in that order. As a music journalist he counts Prince, Beyonce and Quincy Jones amongst those he’s interviewed. He's also owned and flipped homes in Brooklyn, NJ, CT and PA.

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