Over 24,000 properties in Scotland are owned by individuals and companies based overseas, with American owners representing the largest group of buyers based abroad. Research from the Registrars of Scotland shows that those based in Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates are the next biggest overseas buyers.
The most popular cities for overseas investment are Edinburgh and Glasgow, representing two-thirds of the property owned by those registered abroad. One estate agent reported that, of all the Edinburgh properties it sold, 16 per cent were purchased by international buyers. Those doing so were most likely to buy property in the EH3 postcode, with areas such as New Town, Toll Cross, West End and Fountainbridge proving particularly popular. The EH9 area of the city also proves attractive, covering areas including Marchmont and Grange.
Renfrewshire is another area attracting overseas investment in property, coming third in the list for purchases and long-term leases. This is primarily seen to be due to the area of land surrounding Glasgow Airport which is utilised mainly for storage and car parking, with more than one in ten properties owned or leased by those registered outwith the UK being located in Renfrewshire.
Key drivers when it comes to attracting overseas investment in Scottish property are seen to be value for money, quality of life, and Scotland’s reputation for natural beauty. 1.75 million property titles held on the Land Register, which records legal property owners, were analysed by Registers of Scotland. 104,257 (6 per cent) were registered outside Scotland, with 24,100 (1.4 per cent) registered outwith the UK.