Buying Repossessed Properties in Scotland

By May 22, 2009House Repossession

Get your hands on the freshest, most comprehensive auction and repossessed properties list in Scotland.

Scotland, like the rest of the UK, has seen a marked increase in repossessions over the past 12 months, as a result of the global credit crunch. While it is a terrible shame for the homeowners involved, repossessed properties can represent good value for money for both private buyers and investors alike.

Most repossessed properties are sold through property auction houses, and typically go for 20-50% less than similar properties sold through estate agents.

It is a common misconception that, if a home is sold through auction, it is inhabitable and needs lots of money spending on it to bring it up to date. In fact, the majority of repossessed properties sold at auction are in a good state of repair – lenders simply want a quick sale, hence this is why they are sold at auction.

Repossessed properties in Scotland are advertised locally and nationally, as well as on the internet, so that they are marketed as effectively as possible.


Estate agents sometimes advertise such properties in local newspapers, inviting interested parties to bid. You can also subscribe to property auctioneer mailing lists; they will then send you regular details of forthcoming auctions, either by email or through the mail.

Countrywide property auctioneers is the only nationwide auctioneer to sell properties regionally, and details of this can be found on their website. They hold repossessed property auctions in Scotland 8 times per year, in Glasgow. See website for details on how to order their latest catalogue.

There are several property auctioneers in Scotland, including SVA in Edinburgh and John Swan & Sons in Borders. SVA offer regular, large-scale property auctions, with lots on offer including commercial and land for development, in addition to residential properties.

Although SVA auctions are mainly held in Glasgow, the company do hold auctions all over Scotland. See their website for details of properties on offer and forthcoming auctions.

Shaun Vigers, Director of SVA Property Auctions, comments:

“In Scotland, repossessed properties are coming onto the market a lot slower than the rest of the UK: the peak selling period for such properties will be at the end of 2009, or at the beginning of 2010. Scotland was one of the last countries to be affected by house repossession as a result of the recession, but this also means that the Scottish housing market will be the slowest to recover”.

There are a number of companies on the internet that hold a database of all UK properties being sold at auction, including repossessed properties in Scotland. is one such website and Investment Property Database Service (IPDS) features on this site.

IPDS are constantly sourcing details of repossessed properties from auctioneers nationwide as soon as they become available; these properties are then entered onto the IPDS database. Unfortunately, this service is not free, but if you join for one year, you will get another year’s membership free – see website for details.

Membership gets you access to the full database, as well as free email alerts when new properties are added.

Future Auctions is a FREE basic database of forthcoming property auctions throughout the UK; information is gathered from over 300 sites, and details posted onto their website. Auctioneer name is given, along with property location and auction date; if further details are needed, you need to sign up for a future auctions gold account, for which there is a small monthly fee.

However, the company does offer a free emailing service, where they send regular updates of forthcoming property auctions.

There are several distinct advantages of buying (or selling) repossessed property in Scotland through auction, rather than an estate agent: the buying/selling process is much cheaper, quicker, and straightforward, and once the hammer falls, both buyer and seller are reassured that the deal is sealed – no gazumping at auction!

If you are thinking of buying a property at auction, make sure you do your homework and familiarise yourself with the auction process. Have surveys carried out you on any properties you are interested in prior to the auction, and, if you bid, make sure you have the 10% deposit ready on the day and that you can complete the deal within 20-28 days.

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