The latest publication of the monthly UK House Price Index (UK HPI) shows that the average price of a property in Scotland in October 2017 was £143,544 – an increase of 2.8 per cent on October in the previous year and a decrease of 0.7 per cent when compared to the previous month.

This compares to a UK average of £223,807, which was an increase of 4.5 per cent compared to October in the previous year and a decrease of 0.5 per cent when compared to the previous month.

The volume of residential sales in Scotland in August 2017 was 9,282 – an increase of 7.4 per cent on August 2016 and an increase of 5.3 per cent on the previous month. This compares with annual decreases in sales volumes of 12.0 per cent in England, 3.4 per cent in Wales and 8.6 per cent in Northern Ireland (Quarter 3 – 2017).

Registers of Scotland Operations Director and Accountable Officer Janet Egdell said: “Average prices in Scotland continued their upward trend in October with an increase of 2.8 per cent when compared to October 2016. Average prices have been steadily increasing each month since March 2016, when compared with the same month of the previous year.

“Residential sales volumes increased in August. The annual increase of 7.4 per cent when compared with August 2016 in Scotland compares to decreases across the rest of the UK. The cumulative volume of sales for Scotland for the financial year to date – from April to August 2017 – was 45,152. This is an increase of 9.9 per cent on the equivalent year to date position for August 2016.”

The top five local authorities in terms of August sales volumes were the City of Edinburgh (1,190 sales), Glasgow City (1,109 sales), Fife (632 sales), South Lanarkshire (553 sales) and North Lanarkshire (448 sales).

Average price increases were recorded in 29 out of 32 local authorities in October 2017, when comparing prices with the previous year. The biggest price increases were in Dumfries and Galloway and City of Edinburgh, where the average prices increased by 10.5 per cent to £129,885 and 8.5 per cent to £247,568 respectively. The biggest decreases were recorded in Inverclyde and Aberdeen City where prices fell by 4.0 per cent for both to £94,985 and £164,655 respectively.

Across Scotland, all property types showed an increase in average price in October 2017 when compared with the same month in the previous year. Semi-detached properties showed the biggest increase, rising by 4.2 per cent to £151,131. The average price of detached properties showed the smallest increase, 0.9 per cent to £248,482.

The average price in October 2017 for a property purchased by a first time buyer was £116,042 – an increase of 3.4 per cent compared to the same month in the previous year. The average price for a property purchased by a former owner occupier was £172,056 – an increase of 2.3 per cent on the previous year.

The average price for a cash sale was £132,489 – an increase of 2.9 per cent on the previous year – while the average price for property purchased with a mortgage was £148,669 – an increase of 2.8 per cent on the previous year.

Registers of Scotland (RoS) is delighted that Tom Meade, our Digital Director, has been recognised as Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the year at the UK IT Industry Awards in London.

The awards focus on the contribution of individuals, projects, organisations and technologies that have excelled in the use, development and deployment of IT in the past 12 months. They are awarded by Computing and BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT.

Tom received the award for his work in driving forward RoS’ digital transformation process since joining us in September 2014. He has been instrumental in delivering a far-reaching digital transformation throughout the organisation.

Not only has Tom introduced innovative digital thinking while leading the way in changing how we think of ourselves as an organisation, and how we deliver land and property services for Scotland. Just last month, RoS launched ScotLIS – an online, map-based land information service, which allows citizens, communities, professionals and business will be able to access comprehensive information about any piece of land or property in Scotland.

Agile working practices, a digital-first approach and improved customer engagement are just some of the practices that have been driven by Tom. His initiative to move RoS to open source systems has saved RoS £750,000 in licensing fees, and £1.5 million on outsourced support contracts. These more effective systems have delivered an additional £1.5 million saving in lost operation time. Thanks to Tom’s digital ‘big picture’, these efficiencies look set to grow over the coming year, thanks to new online services, digital case and document management systems, and improved digital products like APIs.

Keeper of the Registers of Scotland, Sheenagh Adams said of the award:
“I am delighted to congratulate Tom on his success. His contribution to our digital transformation has been pivotal. In just a short time, his vision for RoS has changed how we think across the organisation.

“It has been a pleasure to watch as he has improved our capability, brought a previously unknown confidence in digital delivery to our working practices, and improved services to deliver real improvements for our customers, savings for our organisation, and a better working environment for our hard working staff.

“His work is paving the way for RoS’ future, as we continue on modernise, innovate and take bold steps towards becoming a fully digital business by 2020.”

For further information please contact communications@ros.gov.uk or call Jacq Kelly on 07825 388 120.

New Year’s Day 2018 will herald a significant move forward in the journey towards fully digital registration services.

Draft regulations laid before parliament by Scottish Ministers yesterday mean that, by the year 2020, most property transactions will be processed digitally. Paper-based processes are to be phased out in a move that will provide Registers of Scotland’s customers – and the wider Scottish economy – with the best possible registration services.

The draft regulations are designed to facilitate new digital services – another important step in RoS’ digital transformation journey. Subject to Parliamentary approval, the new regulations will come into force on 1 January 2018.

Commenting on the progress that lies ahead, The Keeper of the Registers of Scotland, Sheenagh Adams, said:
“These regulations give effect to the proposals set out in the consultation “Digital Transformation: Next Steps” which set out detailed proposals for changes to the Land Register Rules to facilitate the introduction of new digital registration services – including a fully digital transfer of title service.

“The reaction to our proposals was very positive. Our customers and stakeholders expressed strong support for the new digital services that we are developing, and our proposals to simplify and streamline the existing paper application form. By 2020 the vast majority of deeds will be submitted and processed digitally – providing our customers and the wider Scottish economy with the best possible registration services.”

RoS is committed to becoming a fully digital business by 2020. Our new Digital Discharge Service (DDS) has already proved very popular with solicitors and lenders and has greatly reduced the processing time for dealing with applications for discharges.

These new regulations are the next step in the roll out of a much wider range of digital services, including a fully digital approach to Advance Notices over part as well as whole and a new Digital Transfer of Title Service.

The Keeper of the Registers of Scotland, Sheenagh Adams, has launched a new land information service this morning.

ScotLIS, a lynchpin of Registers of Scotland’s (RoS) digital transformation, is an easy to use, map-based, online land information service. For the first time, citizens, communities, professionals and business will be able to access comprehensive information about any piece of land or property in Scotland.

Beginning by sharing RoS’ own data in a user friendly way, ScotLIS will eventually combine with other public sector and government data sets to offer both a useful and unique view of Scotland.

Commenting on the launch, Sheenagh Adams said:

“Our ambition is for ScotLIS to become the platform of choice for land and property information in Scotland. ScotLIS is an enormous achievement, which we will further develop in the coming year, and it reflects our endeavour to be as innovative as possible in the way that we deliver our services.

She added: “I am looking forward to seeing how citizens use this service; be it resolving boundary disputes or gaining clarity on land ownership across our communities, there are countless opportunities to empower the people of Scotland through the value of the data offered by Registers of Scotland. “

Professor Stewart Brymer, who sat on the task force that oversaw the development of ScotLIS, added:

“In 2015, the Deputy First Minister, John Swinney, accepted a recommendation from a task force chaired by the Keeper that ScotLIS should be developed and made available to the people of Scotland by October 2017. I am delighted to join the keeper today to be part of the launch of this service and look forward to seeing it develop over the coming months. ScotLIS is an important step for Scotland’s digital first strategy as well as playing a key role in land reform.

“ScotLIS will be a national asset for everyone. Not only will professionals benefit but the general public will too. For the first time everyone in Scotland will have access to map-based property information through a single portal. ScotLIS reflects our ambition to make the information that belongs to the people of Scotland as accessible as possible.”

The latest publication of the monthly UK House Price Index (UK HPI) shows that the average price of a property in Scotland in August 2017 was £146,354 – an increase of 3.9 per cent on August in the previous year and a decrease of 0.7 per cent when compared to the previous month.

This compares to a UK average of £225,956, which was an increase of 5.0 per cent compared to August in the previous year and an increase of 0.5 per cent when compared to the previous month.

The volume of residential sales in Scotland in June 2017 was 10,473 – an increase of 19.3 per cent on June 2016 and an increase of 26.2 per cent on the previous month. This compares with an annual decrease in sales volumes of 11.0 per cent in England and annual increases in sales volumes of 1.4 per cent in Wales and 5.0 per cent in Northern Ireland (Quarter 2 – 2017).

Registers of Scotland registration and transformation director Charles Keegan said: “Residential sales volumes have taken a boost in June, with volumes hitting a five figure total for the first time since March 2016. The volume in June 2017 was 10,473, while the volume of sales recorded in March 2016 was 11,017. However, the 2016 figure is likely to have been enhanced by house buyers seeking to finalise purchases prior to the introduction of changes to the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax that came into effect on 1 April 2016. Sales volumes in Scotland also continued to perform well in comparison to the other countries of the UK.

“Average prices in Scotland also continued their upward trend in August with an increase of 3.9 per cent when compared to August 2016. Average prices have been steadily increasing each month since March 2016, when compared with the same month of the previous year.”

The top five local authorities in terms of sales volumes were Glasgow City (1,224 sales), the City of Edinburgh (1,216 sales), Fife (704 sales), South Lanarkshire (674 sales) and North Lanarkshire (561 sales).

Average price increases were recorded in 28 out of 32 local authorities in August 2017, when comparing prices with the previous year. The biggest price increase was in the City of Edinburgh, where the average price increased by 10.4 per cent to £246,611. The biggest decreases were in Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City, where prices fell by 5.7 per cent to £188,876 and by 4.8 per cent to £167,903 respectively.

Across Scotland, all property types, with the exception of detached properties, showed an increase in average price in August 2017 when compared with the same month in the previous year. Flatted properties showed the biggest increase, rising by 8.4 per cent to £108,772. The average price of detached properties decreased by 1.9 per cent to £240,241.

The average price in August 2017 for a property purchased by a first time buyer was £120,824 – an increase of 6.2 per cent compared to the same month in the previous year. The average price for a property purchased by a former owner occupier was £171,611 – an increase of 1.5 per cent on the previous year.

The average price for a cash sale was £135,802 – an increase of 4.7 per cent on the previous year – while the average price for property purchased with a mortgage was £151,197 – an increase of 3.5 per cent on the previous year.

With Friday 13th October looming, analysts at Registers of Scotland (RoS) took a peek at our records to see whether this noteworthy date affects people’s property buying habits.

It seems that there may be a degree of superstition when it comes to moving house on Friday 13th.

Figures show that, on the last Friday the 13th (in January 2017), 524 properties changed hands, but that on the equivalent Friday on 2016 (15th) more than twice as many (1,321) residential properties changed hands.

The last Friday the 13th before that was May 2016. Only 530 residential properties changed hands compared with 1,076 on the equivalent Friday 2017 (12 May 2016). On the Friday before (6 May 2016) 972 properties changed hands, with 1,110 house moves taking place on Friday, 20 May 2016.

Commenting on the data, RoS’ Operations Director and Accountable Officer, Janet Egdell, said:

“We can’t definitively say that people are superstitious about moving house on Friday 13th. However, our data does indicate that, while people overwhelmingly prefer to move house on a Friday compared with any other day in the week, there is a significant drop in the number of people doing so where this lands on the 13th day in the month.

“Data collected over a longer period of time shows that, from 1 April 2003 to 31 August 2017, an average of 1,163 people moved house on Fridays, with the exception of Fridays that happened to be the 13th day in the month, when only half as many (519 on average) house moves took place.

“It looks as though Friday 13th is a less popular Friday to move than the others in the year. We look forward to seeing over the next few weeks whether this trend continued in the month of Halloween.”

The last financial year has seen RoS successfully focus on the organisation’s digital transformation programme, completing the land register, taking on an additional register and providing new products and services for our customers.

Keeper of the Registers of Scotland Sheenagh Adams said:
“The last year has been a pivotal time for us. With the ongoing roll-out of our digital transformation, RoS continues to evolve into an entirely digital, 21st century business that serves as a critical asset for Scotland’s people and economy.

“A lynchpin of our digital transformation is our new ScotLIS service. ScotLIS is an innovative, map-based online land and information service. For the first time, citizens, communities, professionals and business will be able to access comprehensive information about any piece of land or property in Scotland with a single enquiry. Our ambition is for ScotLIS to become the platform of choice for land and property information in Scotland following its launch in October 2017. ScotLis is an enormous achievement, which we will further develop in the coming year, and it reflects our endeavour to be as innovative as possible in the way that we deliver our services.

“2016-17 also saw us begin to use my new Keeper-Induced Registration (KIR) powers on a large scale, with over 6,000 titles transferred from the sasine register to the land register through this process. This is a significant step forward in our work to complete the land register by 2024.

“This year we are also celebrating an important milestone: the 400th anniversary of the General Register of Sasines, the oldest continuous public national land register. It seems fitting that, as we celebrate this landmark occasion, we have pressed ahead in our drive to be the modern and innovative organisation that our customers expect and deserve. A new smart working environment at St Vincent Plaza in Glasgow is emblematic of that commitment. While we are proud of our rich history, RoS remains firmly focused on what we want to achieve in the future.”

RoS accepted more than 652,000 applications on to its registers in 2015-16 and provided our information services to over 94,000 customers. RoS has also once again substantially improved its green credentials, with consumption for paper and electricity decreasing. Including a 22 per cent reduction in paper consumption from the previous year, and an electricity consumption reduction of nearly 10 per cent in the same period.

Annual Report 2016-17

The full annual report and accounts is now available to view online.

The latest publication of the monthly UK House Price Index (UK HPI) shows that the average price of a property in Scotland in May 2017 was £143,106 – an increase of 3.5 per cent on May in the previous year and an increase of 0.7 per cent when compared to the previous month.

This compares to a UK average of £220,713, which was an increase of 4.7 per cent compared to May in the previous year and an increase of 0.5 per cent when compared to the previous month.

The volume of residential sales in Scotland in March 2017 was 9,144 – a decrease of 17.0 per cent on March 2016 but an increase of 60.4 per cent on the previous month. This compares with annual decreases in sales volumes of 44.3 per cent in England, 35.5 per cent in Wales and 28.5 per cent in Northern Ireland. Volumes in March 2016 were likely to have been affected by the introduction on 1 April 2016 of the higher rates for additional dwellings under Land and Buildings Transaction Tax in Scotland and Stamp Duty Land Tax in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Registers of Scotland business development and information director Kenny Crawford said: “Average prices in May continued their upward trend when compared with May 2016. There have been increases in every month since March 2016 when compared with the same month of the previous year.”

“Sales volumes figures for March 2017 showed a decrease in Scotland of 17.0% when compared with March 2016, however volumes in March 2016 were higher than usual due to changes in Land and Buildings Transaction Tax that came into effect on 1 April 2016. When compared with previous years, sales volumes figures for March 2017 are up by 20.7 per cent when compared with March 2015, up by 31.8 per cent when compared with March 2014, and up by 44.0 per cent when compared with March 2013.”

The top five local authorities in terms of sales volumes were Glasgow City (1,189 sales), the City of Edinburgh (1,009 sales), Fife (633 sales), South Lanarkshire (595 sales) and North Lanarkshire (481 sales).

Price increases were recorded in 27 out of 32 local authorities in May 2017 compared to the previous year. The biggest price increase was in Perth and Kinross where the average price increased by 7.6 per cent to £182,254. The biggest decrease was again in Aberdeen City, where prices fell by 7.8 per cent to £164,277.

Across Scotland, all property types showed an increase in average price in May 2017 when compared with the same month in the previous year. Detached properties showed the biggest increase, rising by 6.0 per cent to £245,888.

The average price in May 2017 for property purchased by a first time buyer was £115,571 – an increase of 2.0 per cent compared to the same month in the previous year. The average price for a property purchased by a former owner occupier was £171,579 – an increase of 4.7 per cent on the previous year.

The average price for a cash sale was £134,011 – an increase of 5.2 per cent on the previous year – while the average price for property purchased with a mortgage was £148,034 – an increase of 3.3 per cent on the previous year.

Four keepers celebrated 400 years of land registration in Scotland as a specially commissioned poem by Scotland’s Makar, Jackie Kay, was read to the public for the first time today.

The poem celebrates the 400th anniversary of the General Register of Sasines, the world’s oldest national land register. The sasine register is the responsibility of the Keeper of the Registers of Scotland.

The current Keeper of the Registers, Sheenagh Adams, was joined by three previous keepers at the event which also saw a new artwork, specially commissioned to mark the anniversary, dedicated to the public.

The Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, Keith Brown, will attend the official opening of Registers of Scotland’s new offices at Saint Vincent’s Plaza in Glasgow tomorrow as part of the ongoing celebrations.

The keeper, Sheenagh Adams, said:

“We are proud of the work that we do to maintain the oldest national land register in the world for the people of Scotland. We have 400 years of learning and expertise and are consolidating that with modern practices that serve the needs not only of our customers, but of our stakeholders, partners and employees.

“It is fitting that I was joined by three previous keepers today, all of whom have played an important role in RoS’ history, as well as the Cabinet Secretary, Keith Brown, who will officially open our new offices in Glasgow. It is an honour to be able to mark the occasion with this specially commissioned art work and poetry, and we are grateful to everyone involved. It is a delight to be able to bring together so many of our partners in celebration of our 400 year anniversary.”

Text of poem

SASINE
Jackie Kay

Then my auld freend, as the furst sign
Let’s haund ower a clod o’ earth
And ken that ye and I will keep our wurd
Over time’s lang in-between.

Ye came tae life in a dwam, a dream,
A name here shows whaur you’ve been, lang syne.
To measure time, your deeds, this record –
Seizer! The auldest o’ the wurld.

Auld Caledonia: front runner, streaks ahead;
So far that you kin turn and look back;
The slow, timeless stare o’ the stag,
A heap o’ stones, a sma’ time-lag.

Plot, bothy, shack, croft, lease.
A writ stamped, counterpart, peace.
This land register – across these four centuries:
Fast furward, back; here’s your old stories.

The latest publication of the monthly UK House Price Index (UK HPI) shows that the average price of a property in Scotland in April 2017 was £145,734 – an increase of 6.8 per cent on April in the previous year and an increase of 5.4 per cent when compared to the previous month.

This compares to a UK average of £220,094, which was an increase of 5.6 per cent compared to April in the previous year and an increase of 1.6 per cent when compared to the previous month.

Registers of Scotland corporate director John King said: “This release marks the one-year anniversary of the first publication of the UK HPI. During this time, the HPI has been well received and we have been liaising with users around its ongoing development. Feedback has already resulted in a number of enhancements, details of which are outlined in the anniversary news release, published on behalf of the HPI working group by our partner HM Land Registry.

“Average prices this April showed the highest year-on-year increase since March 2015, when the average price increased by 10.4 per cent compared to the year before, and there have been increases in every month since March 2016 when compared with the same month of the previous year.”

The volume of residential sales in Scotland in February 2017 was 5,662 – an increase of 2.8 per cent on February 2016 but a decrease of 10.2 per cent on the previous month. This compares with annual decreases in sales volumes of 18.2 per cent in England, 8.8 per cent in Wales and 28.5 per cent in Northern Ireland. This is the third consecutive month in which Scotland volumes figures, when compared with the same month of the previous year, have shown an increase while volumes in the rest of the UK have decreased.

Mr King added: “Sales volumes figures for February 2017 showed an increase in Scotland of 2.8% when compared with February 2016. This is also up by 10.7 per cent when compared with February 2015 and up by 32.1 per cent when compared with February 2013, but down by 1.3 per cent when compared with February 2014.”

The top five local authorities in terms of sales volumes were Glasgow City (722 sales), the City of Edinburgh (562 sales), Fife (356 sales), North Lanarkshire (351 sales) and South Lanarkshire (313 sales).

The biggest price increase when comparing April 2017 with April 2016 was in East Dunbartonshire where the average price increased by 11.2 per cent to £202,466. The biggest decrease was again in the City of Aberdeen, where prices fell by 4.3 per cent to £167,630.

Across Scotland, all property types showed an increase in average price in April 2017 when compared with the same month in the previous year. Detached properties showed the biggest increase, rising by 8.0 per cent to £252,492.

The average price in April 2017 for property purchased by a first time buyer was £117,556 – an increase of 5.9 per cent compared to the same month in the previous year. The average price for a property purchased by a former owner occupier was £174,848 – an increase of 7.5 per cent on the previous year.

The average price for a cash sale was £138,425 – an increase of 10.6 per cent on the previous year – while the average price for property purchased with a mortgage was £150,688 – an increase of 6.4 per cent on the previous year.