A guide to holiday homes in Scotland

From the stunning, unspoiled landscapes of the Highlands or the coastal delights of Dumfries & Galloway to the bustling, modern cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, Scotland has a lot going for it.

And with a growing number of Brits opting to stay on domestic shores for their holidays rather than travel abroad, there’s never been a better time to invest in a Scottish holiday home.

Whether you’re looking for a cosy cottage to get away from it all, a holiday home by the sea or a rental property that generates income all year round, Scotland is the place to be.

Here, we take a closer look at some of the best places in Scotland to locate a holiday home and some of the things you need to consider.

Best locations for a Scottish holiday home

We’re not exaggerating when we say that Scotland really does offer something for everyone.

Whatever your holiday style – whether it’s a quiet break in the countryside or an action-packed week with the family – there are plenty of potential holiday home locations that fit the bill.

As we mentioned in the intro, Dumfries & Galloway, in the southwest of Scotland, features some of the country’s most stunning coastline, green countryside, deep woodland and rolling hills for miles around.

Further along the coast, you can discover the Gaelic town of Oban, the isles of Argyll and the Viking Trail from the Caledonian Canal up north to Orkney and Shetland.

On the other side of the country, the Fife Coastal Trail takes in miles of glorious scenery, where you can spend time watching boats in the 16th Century harbour or scramble through rocks and caves along the Elie Chain Walk.

If walking is your thing, the Isle of Bute is the perfect destination for a break off the beaten track. It’s one of Scotland’s most accessible islands and includes unique attractions like the Victorian Rothesay Castle and the stately home at Mount Stuart.

And if you’re looking for something a bit more cultured or exhilarating, city life in Scotland also has its fair share of riches.

Aberdeen is packed with some of Europe’s most unique architecture. It offers plenty to do, from the distilleries and whiskey bars it’s famed for to the newly refurbished Aberdeen Art Gallery. It also has a growing street art and comedy scene.

Edinburgh, meanwhile, boasts a historic castle, dungeon and zoo among its many attractions and is home to world-famous events like the Edinburgh Military Tattoo and the Fringe Festival.

And Glasgow is famed for its Cathedral and School of Art, not to mention one of the best-known rivalries in world football, the Old Firm derby between Rangers and Celtic. And no trip to Glasgow would be complete without a visit to its famous Science Centre or Riverside Museum.

With property prices remaining buoyant across Scotland, wherever you’re looking to buy a holiday property, it’s sure to be a sound investment, provided you get the right mortgage.

Making the most of your Scottish holiday home

If you’re buying a holiday home in Scotland, either as a second property or to let it out, there are several things to consider.

We’ll get to the type of mortgage you might need in a minute, but that’s not the only cost you’ll likely face.

However, with the right mortgage and everything else in place, holiday let properties can generate a valuable revenue stream, so maximising the rate on return is essential. So, ensuring you understand your target audience is vital if you’re letting it out.

You’ll need to be sure that the holiday home is as appealing as possible to tourists, holidaymakers and potential guests to tempt them to book with you.

For example, if you’re investing in a holiday cottage, how big is it? Does it cater for large groups, and is it family-friendly?

If you’re investing in a city apartment or a cosy couple’s retreat, what facilities do you offer? Is it close to local amenities? What about wifi, TV or car parking?

These are all things you need to consider when investing in a holiday property, as they could affect your success at renting them out.

It’s also important to understand the other financial commitments that come with holiday home ownership.

Saving for a deposit and securing a mortgage is one thing. There are other things to consider, including legal or insurance fees, moving costs, refurbishment, gas or electrical safety checks, and any ongoing maintenance or repairs. These can all mount up, especially if you have spent most of your budget on the property itself.

And if you’re planning to let your holiday home out when you’re not using it, you’ll also need to consider ongoing marketing, servicing, management and maintenance fees, as well as keeping the property clean and tidy in-between lets and getting it ready for when each new set of guests arrives.

What sort of mortgage do I need to buy a Scottish holiday home?

If you’re looking to buy a holiday home in Scotland, you’ll probably need a mortgage.

If you’re looking to purchase a property for personal use only, then you’ll need a holiday home mortgage.

However, if you plan to let your Scottish property out to tourists on a short-term basis, then you’ll need a holiday let mortgage. These mortgages are designed specifically for people wanting to invest in a property they plan to let out.

Understanding your options when it comes to the type of holiday home mortgage you need is essential.

Our expert team has over 40 years of experience in the holiday home market and is dedicated to taking the stress away from getting the right mortgage.

We’ll provide honest, straightforward advice and guidance on the right way forward and help you arrange the deal that’s right for you to make your investment a Scottish holiday property as pain-free as possible. For more information, get in touch today.