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Prices in Scotland up over 13% year on year, latest official data shows

The average house price in Scotland from January to March was £173,830, the highest figure recorded for any quarter since RoS began compiling quarterly statistics in 2003.

RoS head of data, Hugh Welsh, said Scotland has seen sustained growth in house prices throughout the last 12 months with January to March's figures representing the highest quarterly increase in average prices since 2008.

‘Future sales statistics will determine whether this is a one-off spike in quarter four average prices, or whether this is a trend that will continue,’ he added.

All local authorities in Scotland showed a rise in average property prices. The highest percentage rise was in East Lothian, up 28.6% on the same period in the previous year to an average of £248,902.

The total volume of sales across Scotland was 16,946, a decrease of 4.7% on the same quarter in the previous year. This is the second consecutive quarter that has seen sales volumes decrease, and is the highest annual decrease in sales volumes since 2012.

West Dunbartonshire showed the largest percentage rise in the number of sales, with an increase of 10.6%. The biggest percentage decrease was in Midlothian, which dropped 28.1% to 233 residential house sales.

The total value of sales across Scotland registered in the quarter increased by 8% to just under £2.95 billion compared to the previous year. This represents the highest value of sales for this quarter since 2008.

The City of Edinburgh recorded both the highest average for the quarter at £260,647, a rise of 21.4% and the highest volume of sales, with 2,123 property sales. It also accounted for Scotland's largest market value with sales of just over £553 million for the quarter, an increase of 29.2% on the previous year.

All property types showed an increase in average house price, with semi-detached properties recording the largest increase at 15%. With the exception of detached properties which saw an increase in sales volumes of 9.1%, the volumes of all property types decreases, with flats showing the biggest decrease at 9.1%.

CKD Galbraith property consultancy, said its own sales figures largely supported statistics issued today by Registers of Scotland showing a significant growth in the values of property being sold.

Simon Brown, partner and head of residential sales at CKD Galbraith, said the firm has continued to experience increased demand, which has also led to rising prices achieved across many areas of the country.

‘Last year was a time of steady growth in the property market, despite some uncertainty around the referendum period. This growth has continued into 2015, and although the introduction of the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax created a slight spike in high end sales at the very start of the year, this will be more readily seen in the next quarter’s statistics,’ he explained.

‘Confidence is building further during the spring sales period, and we are seeing properties taking less time to sell. Unlike the Registers of Scotland stats, we have seen a growth in the number of properties being sold. We believe this is due to an increase in the volume of property instructions the firm has received and especially high demand in the middle of the market,’ he pointed out.

‘The healthy results we have experienced for this quarter demonstrates an encouraging start to 2015 for the Scottish property market,’ he added.