Scotland’s average house price has grown by £43,381 from March 2020 to November 2023, according to data analysed by property firm DJ Alexander.
The monthly house price index reveals an average increase from £150,625 to £194,006.
In the Scottish real estate landscape, regional variations are significant. East Lothian leads with a staggering rise of £101,816, followed by East Renfrewshire (£79,734) and Edinburgh (£70,612). On the low end, Aberdeenshire experienced a modest increase of £26,062, North Ayrshire (£24,447), and Aberdeen city was the sole location to witness a decline (-£778).
What these figures show is that prices have risen strongly in and around Edinburgh with Midlothian, East Lothian, and West Lothian all recording substantial increases while areas just outside Glasgow such as East Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire also scoring highly among buyers.
Outside the central belt prices have risen sharply around Stirling, Perth and Kinross, and, in the Highlands, Moray, and Argyll and Bute which could be demand from a combination of second homeowners, holiday lets, and people moving to the area to work or for retirement.
The shift to living around major cities is likely to be caused both by price pressures within places like Edinburgh and Glasgow but also the trend established during the pandemic for seeking properties with outside spaces.
It is among detached homes that the largest increases have been recorded over this period as the appeal of outdoor space provided by larger properties continues to push the top end of the market and this trend – begun during the early days of Covid – seems to be unstoppable. In Scotland, the average price of a detached home has risen by £98,906 (or £2,197 for each month since the pandemic).
The average price of a detached home in Edinburgh has risen by £215,370 in the 45 months since Covid and now stands at £801,543. East Lothian saw the second highest increase in average price for a detached home rising by £209,035 to £607,717.
East Renfrewshire detached homes have risen by £172,609 and are now at £574,701; Glasgow increased by £151,162 to £480,063; while East Dunbartonshire larger properties have gone up by £122,045 to £498,049. The Scottish average price for a detached home rose by £98,906 to reach £359,179.
“The last few years since the start of the pandemic have witnessed an unparalleled growth in house prices across Scotland,” noted David Alexander, CEO of DJ Alexander Scotland. “For average prices to increase by £43,381 in less than four years is very unusual and there is every sign that this trend will continue in the coming year.
“In certain parts of Scotland obviously we have had lower price increases but overall, this is an unusually robust performance in a market that was expected to be sluggish at best.
“Edinburgh and the surrounding areas, East Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire have all experienced very strong price growth. Equally Angus, Perthshire, the Highlands, and the West coast have all seen substantial price rises.”
Mr Alexander added: “But the numbers become almost unbelievable when you look at the increase in the price of detached homes. Detached homes in Edinburgh have now broken through the £800,000 barrier for the first time ever and now cost £215,370 more than they did in March 2020.
“With increases in the price of detached homes in the city rising by nearly £5,000 for every month of the last forty-five this is a clear sign that Edinburgh’s property market is on fire.”
He continued: “As prices have risen in Edinburgh buyers have sought homes in the immediate areas around the capital. This ripple effect is increasing prices in East Lothian, West Lothian, Midlothian, and Fife. This is also happening in areas just outside Glasgow where high six figure increases have occurred in the detached homes market.
“The risk is that we are creating a two-tier property market between some parts of Scotland and the rest. Where prices are rising this steeply it could mean that some of these areas may become simply unaffordable to a large part of the population. However, this trend may slow as property and personal taxes continue to soar but there is little doubt that parts of Scotland’s property market are experiencing something of a boom at present.”
Mr Alexander concluded: “While all these figures indicate a buoyant market there must be a point at which affordability comes into play. While there are plenty of well-paid jobs in our major cities and many affluent people who wish to move to rural and remote Scotland there must be a limit to how much buyers are willing to pay for a property.
“Market forces usually play their part in controlling prices, but for the moment there seems to be an alternative economy operating in parts of Scotland which are boosting property prices to new highs. The coming year will be crucial in establishing whether this is a long-term trend or a momentary blip.”