Four of our staff attended the event on 10th June, which covered various subjects relating to Scottish property (residential and commercial).
In one section, three speakers took it in turn to “sell” their respective city in terms of opportunities. All gave great presentations but, Tim Allen of Unicorn Property Group and President of the Dundee and Angus Chamber of Commerce would have to be the standout for his unfettered enthusiasm for Dundee.
As accountants, we were of course interested in the facts and figures and many presenters gave a wealth of statistics, all showing that property in Scotland has had a good year with high commercial rent and occupancy levels, especially in Glasgow and Edinburgh. This is primarily as a result of high demand/low supply.
Thomas Ashdown of Citylets noted that although rents have increased significantly over the last year, when looked at over a five year period rents are in reality just increasing in line with inflation. This was highlighted as an important fact in light of the Scottish Government’s proposal to impose rent increase restrictions because of perceived long term above-inflation rent increases, which these figures do not support.
Throughout the Conference, one other common concern was the Government’s proposal to take away the right for landlords to remove tenants (after due process) for no reason other than that the term of the lease has expired. This was so worrying that several speakers expressed concerns at investing in Scottish residential property until there is full clarity on this matter.
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