There has been greater activity in the market for country houses and residential estates during the past two months than we have experienced for the past two or three years.
The ‘new normal’ of home working, combined with an increased recognition in the wake of Covid-19 of the beneﬁts of a cordon sanitaire, has breathed fresh vigour into this sector.
The market is by its very nature a small one – perhaps only about 10-15 English estates are sold each year and the ﬁve-year average in Scotland is 21. But since Covid-19 lockdown restrictions were eased, our phones have been busy with requests from vendors to provide market appraisals and prepare sales, and from buyers anxious to capitalise on their long-awaited freedom to get on with ﬁnding and buying their dream property.
In northern Britain, there had been a developing trend among some buyers at the top end of the market to want to build a bespoke house, often of period design, to get the beneﬁts of 21st Century living.
But there are indications that tastes may be changing and that buyers are switching back to wanting the style, history and heritage associated with a rural estate. In the weeks that have followed the easing of lockdown, a wide variety of traditional country houses and residential estates have sold both quickly and well – some publicly, others privately. Buyers are primarily UK-based and often already own signiﬁcant property in London.
We anticipate current levels of activity will continue for a few months longer, but there is a level of uncertainty beyond that, given the inevitable global and national economic pressures on the way. That said, so few estates are offered for sale each year buyers are likely to continue to outnumber sellers and the best of the best will always sell well.
If you would like information about any of these properties or a market update speciﬁc to your property, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Image: CAIRNTY ESTATE, FOCHABERS, MORAY, https://www.struttandparker.com/properties/orton