The average price of a property in Scotland increased by 9% in January, according to Walker Fraser Steele’s latest House Price Index.

On a monthly basis, average property prices rose by 0.9%.

As a result, the average price of a home in Scotland in January was noted at £203,369.

On a regional basis in the year to January 2021, the region of Na h-Eileanan Siar saw the greatest increase in property prices, up 24.9%.

Over the same timeframe, prices in the Orkney Islands fell by 5.3%.

Month-on-month, prices rose by the greatest margin in Inverclyde, up 7.3%, while prices fell by 5.7% in the Shetland Islands.

The data also shows that sales of detached homes increased at the fastest rate of all property types.

As well as this, transactions in Q4 2020 rose by 25% on Q4 2019 levels.

Alan Penman, business development manager at Walker Fraser Steele, said: “As in the rest of the UK, buyers are seeking property in country locations.

“Areas that continue to do well in Scotland include Aberdeenshire, Perthshire, and Ayrshire. More generally, Scotland’s housing market continues to offer exceptional value for money compared to many areas south of the border.

“Demand regionally has been fuelled by changing housing preferences as a result of the pandemic and the lockdowns of the last year.

“The pandemic has changed what many people want in a property and, in many cases, they are leaving big cities for smaller towns or more rural areas.

“Lifestyle changes and the changes to Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) have worked together to help underpin the price rises of the last year.

“It is possible that the successful roll-out of the vaccination programme and the gradual relaxing of pandemic measures will, in conjunction with the extended government support for jobs, continue to underpin home-owners and buyers’ confidence.

“The raising of the nil threshold last July prompted a growth in the volume of first-time buyers in the Scottish market helping transactions grow 25% in Q4 compared to Q4 of the previous year.

“Holyrood has decided to end the LBTT holiday on 1st April this year, however, the market has shown it has performed well with its support with annual price growth in January 2021 reaching 9%.”