Home Looking in Scotland: Classic Mansion Meets Fashionable Model for $2 Million
A three bedroom house with modern decorations
$2.1 MILLION (1.6 MILLION BRITISH POINTS)
This three bedroom house is located in the center of Pencaitland, a village 12 miles east of Edinburgh, the Scottish capital. Originally the south wing of a 17th century mansion on a huge lot. The 3,395-square-foot home now sits on 1.35 acres and was fully renovated in 2005 by the current owners, said Jamie Macnab, director of country home sales at Savills, who has the listing.
The renovation included converting a former brewhouse and ice house on the property into entertainment rooms as well as the addition of two glass-enclosed garden rooms.
The property’s original front gates open onto a tree-lined gravel road that leads to a parking lot. The main entrance opens directly into the combined kitchen, living and dining areas, a configuration the owners created by removing some of the building’s original interior walls, Macnab said.
The room has wide oak floors with radiant heat. A cast iron fireplace surrounds one end of the room, and a four-burner AGA stove and small island is at the other end, with the dining area in between. Marble-topped cabinets, two sinks, and two dishwashers extend the length of one wall.
Next to the living area is the more formal drawing room with another fireplace and three arched Palladian-style glass doors. The doors open to the property’s circular courtyard, which is arranged around a fountain made up of a huge cast iron bowl.
A garden room with glass walls extends from the salon in a curved curve and offers a view of the landscaped grounds. It has a stone back wall and a black and white Italian tile floor with radiant heat.
Stone stairs lead to two bedrooms on the second floor. The master bedroom has a gas fireplace, hand-printed wallcoverings and a freestanding bathtub with a view of the windows. The adjoining bathroom has a dressing room, wardrobes with mirror fronts, Italian tile floors and a vanity with marble top and three sinks.
The second bedroom also has a gas fireplace and its own bath. A third bedroom in the attic has exposed beams and a bathroom.
On the other side of the courtyard, the long, narrow brewhouse is connected to a round ice house by a second extension of the garden room. All three rooms can be opened to a spacious stone terrace. The brewhouse, currently equipped with several seating areas, has vaulted ceilings with wooden beams and black slate floors with radiant heat. The ice house has exposed stone walls and a glass roof.
The property is on the edge of the extensive grounds of Winton Castle, the heart of the original estate and is now a venue for weddings and conferences. Across the street is the Pencaitland Parish Church, the oldest parts of which date from the 13th century.
The village of Pencaitland is in Scotland’s East Lothian rural parish, “one of the most popular country houses in the Edinburgh area,” known for its rolling farmland, picturesque seaside villages and numerous golf courses, Macnab said.
Haddington town, approximately 10 minutes away, has a variety of shops and restaurants. Edinburgh Airport is around 30 minutes away.
The housing market in the greater Edinburgh area was strong before the pandemic closed, and since Scotland eased restrictions in late June it has come back, agents said.
The city of roughly 500,000 is in the midst of a redevelopment boom, including a £ 1 billion, 1.7 million square foot retail and residential hub known as the St. James Quarter and a planned refurbishment of the Granton Waterfront for 1 , £ 3 billion into a sustainable community of housing, commercial space and a park.
“The regeneration we see is like nothing we have seen in a generation,” said Ben Fox, Savill’s director of Edinburgh home sales.
According to Savills, prices in the best parts of the city have increased 26.5 percent in the past five years. As of the end of the third quarter of this year, prices in the city still rose 3.5 percent over the same period of 2019, despite the halt in activities during the shutdown. Across Scotland, the average price of a home rose 0.4 percent to £ 155,000 ($ 200,000) from July 2019 to July 2020, although it was down from 3.2 percent in June 2020.
Mr. Fox attributed the price strength to the increase in demand for the lockdown combined with low inventory levels. However, supply has increased significantly since August as sellers try to take advantage of the fast-paced market so “there is a balance in some parts of the market between touching an oversupply,” he said.
In July and August after coronavirus restrictions were eased, Knight Frank saw the number of people registering with the property viewing agency increase nearly 200 percent (from the five-year average), Edward Douglas said. Home, Head of Scottish Residential Area for Knight Frank. “The three months after the lockdown ended in late June has been like nothing I’ve ever experienced – it was just extraordinary,” he said. “My team did six months of work in three months, based on sales.”
As of October 19, Scotland, with a population of 5.4 million, had 49,164 reported cases of Covid-19 and 2,625 deaths, according to Public Health Scotland. The Scottish government recently ordered pubs and restaurants to be closed in central Scotland (including Edinburgh) by October 25, hoping to reverse an upward trend in some cases.
Knight Frank’s median selling price for the mid to high end of the Edinburgh market is currently around £ 700,000 ($ 907,000), Douglas-Home said. That would buy a two- or three-bedroom apartment in the city center or a three-bedroom house with a small garden about 10 minutes outside of town, he said.
Edinburgh’s leafy suburbs, including Inverleith, Trinity, Morningside and Grange, have seen a particular surge in buyer interest in recent months, Fox said, “Driven by remote workers and the need for more space, larger gardens and extra space for one Office. “
The country house market outside of Edinburgh, which has lagged the city since the 2009 recession, has benefited from the same buyers’ reorientation, Macnab said: “Now country houses are seen as good value and there has been a renaissance in that market in the UK last three months. “
The city itself has seen an influx of buyers from London who are now able to work remotely. Edinburgh is more affordable and “very manageable and walkable” so that most residents can get around easily and avoid the risk of sharing public transport, Douglas-Home said.
Who buys in Scotland
About 30 to 40 percent of shoppers in and around Edinburgh come from outside Scotland, mostly from other parts of the UK, Douglas-Homes said.
The approximately 10 percent of international buyers usually come from Europe, the USA, China and Hong Kong.
However, travel restrictions imposed by Covid-19 have recently reduced the number of international buyers, especially those who are at the top of the price range. “The local market works well up to £ 1.5 million ($ 1.9 million),” Macnab said. “Once you get beyond that, we start looking for remote buyers more often.”
There are no restrictions on foreigners buying residential property in Scotland. Real estate agents represent sellers. It’s rare for a buyer to have their own agent – most are trading for themselves when looking at property, Macnab said.
Buyers must hire an attorney to create and submit an offer to buy, negotiate the contract, and process the transaction.
Sellers pay the agency commission of 1 to 2 percent.
Languages and currency
English, Gaelic, Scottish; Pounds sterling (1 pound = $ 1.30)
Taxes and Fees
To stimulate the real estate market, the government raised the land and building transaction tax threshold in July from a portion of a sale over £ 145,000 to over £ 250,000 ($ 325,000). The change is valid until March 2021.
Prices start at 5 percent and climb to a high of 12 percent for each portion of a sale over £ 750,000 ($ 970,000). Another 4 percent is charged for a second home.
Legal fees are typically £ 1,500 to £ 2,000 ($ 1,950 to $ 2,590), Douglas-Home said.
The annual council tax on this home is £ 4,087 (US $ 5,300).
Jamie Macnab, Savills, 011-44-131-247-3738; www.savills.co.uk
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