We caught up with Scott Hall, Premium Property Agent at residential, commercial and agricultural estate and letting agents, CKD Galbraith.
1. What made you take the leap into the property industry?
My passions have always been beautiful locations, country pursuits and enterprise. The property industry allowed me the opportunity to combine all three on a daily basis. I am now fortunate enough to visit some of the finest and most exclusive properties in the UK, and the challenge of cultivating private deals between buyers and sellers that might otherwise never have happened.
2. I’ve got £1m to spend on property in Scotland, where’s hot right now?
Central Edinburgh is the obvious choice if you are looking for an investment. The capital continues to make its mark in a global context. We are finding more and more people wanting to sell prime properties in Edinburgh privately. A buying agent will earn their commission by seeking out properties that may never be advertised.
That said, if you were looking for a return in the form of fun, there are some incredible spots on the North and West Coasts where we could make £1million go a long way!
3. How does CKD Galbraith differ from its competitors?
CKD Galbraith is the largest independent property consultancy in Scotland with 11 offices across the country. This geographical coverage gives us unrivalled local knowledge and we regularly hear about properties that may only ever be purchased privately. CKD Galbraith also has expertise across a broad spectrum of property related services including: Building Surveying, Rural Estate Management, Sporting and Holiday Lets, Valuation Services and Agricultural Loans. This makes us a truly one-stop shop for anyone looking to buy, sell, rent, let or stay put!
4. Has the introduction of LBTT (Land and Buildings Transaction Tax) affected the top end of the market as some predicted?
LBTT has had an impact on some properties at the higher end and there have been some cases where deals have tried to ‘fit’ into each bracket in order to reduce the tax paid. There is evidence to suggest that LBTT is at a rate which is discouraging buyers of higher-priced properties, and that offers are being adjusted downwards slightly to take the tax into account. The additional 3% levy on second homes commencing on 1st April looks likely have an additional effect for those looking for a holiday property. That said, Scotland still offers incomparable wilderness, beauty and history and even with these unwelcomed tax increases, property here still represents good value for money.
5. What are your predictions for the market for the rest of the year?
Typically the rural market doesn’t get going until after Easter, but we are already discussing private deals ahead of the main selling season. Despite the impending Referendum on European Membership, buyers are coming forward from all over the UK and abroad registering an interest in finding their dream property here in Scotland. We currently have a list of over 100 properties that could be bought privately, so for us it’s an exciting time.
6. What do you love and hate about the property industry?
I love my boss and hate my days off!