Your Move House Price Index reveals marginal rise in house prices in Scotland with higher priced property continuing to see the strongest growth
House prices in Scotland increased only marginally (0.1%) in January, with the average home now worth £171,407, up £137, according to the latest House Price Index for Scotland from Your Move.
Over the last 12 months, however, average prices have risen by £2,600, which is the equivalent to annual growth of 1.5%.
Despite concerns over the Brexit vote, there’s been little impact on house prices since June, with fairly steady, but modest, increases. Annual growth is 0.5 percentage points higher than this time last year.
Across the country, Your Move found mixed results. Exactly half of the 32 local authority areas saw prices rise in January, led by Inverclyde, up 5.3%. The only area to reach a new peak, though, was Angus as buyers switched from flats to detached properties.
Annual house price inflation in Scotland trails every region in Great Britain, other than the North East. At 1.5%, it’s less than half the 3.9% across England and Wales as a whole.
However, in contrast to elsewhere in the UK, higher priced property continues to see the strongest growth in Scotland.
Eight of the 10 most expensive local authority areas in Scotland, saw increases in prices over the last 12 months. East Renfrewshire, the most expensive area in Scotland, has seen average prices grow 8.9% in the last year to £248,735.
High value sales – in this case two on the Isle of Eriska at over £1 million – are responsible for the 9.7% increase in annual prices in Argyll and Bute, the biggest increase in the last 12 months. Such sales, though relatively rare (with just 443 sales over £750,000 in thew hole of 2016), weigh heavily in parts of the market where transaction activity is limited, Said Your Move.
By contrast, more than half the cheapest 10 local authorities have prices lower than they were 12 months ago, with the biggest drop in values over the year in North Ayrshire, down 11.5%. It’s now the cheapest area other than Na h-Eileanan Siar.
Although Inverclyde saw a 5.3% monthly increase in prices in January (helped by its second highest value house sale in the last year), it experienced a 6.5% drop in prices over the year.
Angus experienced price increases (up 2.4% over the month) with good quality properties in Montrose and Hillside being particularly popular. This can be attributed to the Aberdeenshire market drop over recent years which resulted in more properties coming to the market in Angus as additional supply has counter-acted the slight drop in demand, says Your Move. Buyers also moved south from Aberdeenshire for more affordable housing.
Christine Campbell, Your Move managing director in Scotland, said: “Relatively slow house price growth in Scotland is proving a blessing for first-time buyers. The early indications are that they’re using the opportunity to get on the ladder, helping to sustain transaction numbers.”
“It will be interesting to see how talks of another Scottish referendum play out, and whether or not it has an impact on buyer and seller appetite to make a move now, or indeed, in the future.”
Alan Penman, business development manager for Walker Fraser Steele, one of Scotland’s oldest firms of chartered surveyors and part of the LSL group of companies, added: “The fortunes of Scotland’s premium areas highlight a striking contrast to elsewhere in Britain. Interest rate cuts last summer reinvigorated top-end sales, and higher priced areas continue to drive price growth.”