Housing statistics quarterly update: December 2021

A summary of activity in new build housing, affordable housing and long term empty properties and second homes in Scotland.

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5. UK House Price Index (HPI) new build sales transactions, as a measure of private-led housebuilding activity to end July 2021

This section sets out the latest quarterly and monthly trends in the number of new build sales transactions in Scotland to end July 2021, based on residential property transaction figures published as part of the UK House Price Index (HPI)[4].

These figures may be helpful in providing an indication of recent levels of private led new housebuilding activity, particularly given the current delay in the publication of the Scottish Government new housebuilding private-led starts and completions figures.[5]

It should be noted that the HPI-based figures are not directly comparable to the Scottish Government time series on private-led new build starts and completion, due to some differences in how the two sets of figures are constructed. For example, the UK HPI new build sales transaction figures are based on the date of the completed sales transaction rather than the date of completion, and will also not include self-build dwellings or homes built privately for tenures other than private sales.

Further information on the quality of the HPI data for Scotland, which is sourced from Registers of Scotland, is available in the UK HPI Quality Assurance section of the UK House Price Index web page.

Table 3 and Chart 7a below illustrate how the UK HPI figures compare to previously published Scottish Government Private sector-led completion figures in each quarter from January to March 2019 onwards, and also provide the latest trends seen in the UK HPI new build sales transactions figures across the two more recent quarters to January to June 2021.

It can be seen across the period January to March 2019 to October to December 2020 (the latest available quarterly figures for Scottish Government Private led completions) that both data series follow broadly similar trends in respect of increases or decreases compared to the previous quarter. The Scottish Government figures are higher in most quarters, but this is likely to be explained by differences in how the figures are constructed, given that some self-build dwellings or dwellings built privately for tenures other than private sales will be included, whereas the HPI figures are based on private sale transactions only.

Map B: New build housing - Private Sector completions: rates per 10,000 population, year to end December 2020
Map B: Private sector new housebuilding completion rates, per 10,000 population in the year to end December 2020
Table 3 – Scotland-level HPI New Build Sales Transactions Volume for Scotland and Scottish Government Private Sector-led new build completions
Quarter or year HPI New Build Sales Transactions Volume Scottish Government Private-led completions
Jan – Mar 2019 2,407 3,460
Apr – Jun 2019 3,293 4,536
Jul – Sep 2019 2,759 4,052
Oct – Dec 2019 3,807 4,716
Jan – Mar 2020 2,385 3,038
Apr – Jun 2020 717 688
Jul – Sep 2020 2,428 2,998
Oct – Dec 2020 3,098 3,910
Jan – Mar 2021 2,710 Not available
Apr - Jun 2021 2,903 Not available
Change from previous quarter +193  
Change (%) from previous quarter +7%  
Change from same quarter in previous year +2,186  
Change (%) from same quarter in previous year +305%  
12 months Jul 2019 - Jun 2020 9,668 12,494
12 months Jul 2020 - Jun 2021 11,139 Not available
Change from previous year +1,471  
Change (%) from previous year +15%  

Note there were 882 transactions recorded in the most recent month of July 2021, which brings the total 12 month figure to end July 2021 to be 11,346, an increase of 1,746 (18%) on the previous year to end July 2020. Sources: UK House Price Index: reports - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) (September 2021 data downloads) and Scottish Government Private Sector-led new build completions

Chart 7a: Scottish Government Private Sector led new housebuilding completions and HPI new build sales transactions. Scotland: Jan - Mar 2019 to Apr - Jun 2021
Chart 7a: Scottish Government Private Sector led new housebuilding completions and HPI new build sales transactions from January 2019 to June 2021

The latest quarterly HPI figures show that there were 2,903 new build sales transactions in Scotland in the quarter April to June 2021, an increase of 193 (7%) on the 2,710 transactions seen in January to March 2021, and an increase of 2,186 transactions on the 717 transactions seen in April to June 2020, a quarter in which housebuilding activity was largely paused due to lockdown measures.

More recent HPI figures for the month of July 2021 show a total of 882 transactions for this month (see Chart 7b). This brings the total transactions in the year to end July 2021 to 11,346, an increase of 18% (1,746 transactions) on the 9,600 transactions recorded in the year to end July 2020.

Chart 7b: Monthly private new build sales transactions in Scotland across January to July 2021 have been broadly in line with the number of transactions seen in these months in the pre-pandemic year 2019
Chart 7b: UK House Price Index (HPI) Scotland level private new build sales transactions from 2019 and 2021

Contact

Email: Housing_Statistics_Inbox@gov.scot

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