The latest Bank of Scotland research has revealed that, in terms of Scottish home affordability, Perth has seen the biggest improvement - while Stirling is the most affordable city in the whole of the UK.
According to the data, the average house price in Perth has risen by 11% to £181,329 in the last five years, lower than the average of all other Scottish cities which increased by 23% to £190,250.
This also means that Perth is the only city in Scotland where homes are more affordable than they were five years ago, improving from 5.5 times the average yearly salary to 5.44. Perth also had the biggest improvement in home affordability over the last 12 months (5.80 to 5.44).
Stirling is the most affordable city in the whole of the UK when comparing average house price to average wages. The average house price in Stirling is now £186,084, which is 4.03 times local average earnings. This is below the overall average ratio in Scotland of 5.35 and the UK average of 7.20.
Average house prices in Glasgow increased faster than in any other Scottish city
The average house price in Glasgow has increased by 35% in the last five years, faster than any other Scottish city. In 2012, the average house price was £128,733, rising to £173,990 in 2017. Glasgow has also seen the steepest decline in home affordability in the last five years (4.27 to 5.50 times average earnings).
Home affordability in Scotland improves very slightly in last 12 months
The average house price across all Scottish cities increased by 1.8%, from £186,827 in 2016 to £190,250 in 2017. Comparatively, average earnings increased by 2%, resulting in average home affordability improving very slightly in the last 12 months from 5.36 to 5.35 times average earnings.
Edinburgh, Dundee and Perth all saw an improvement in average home affordability over the past year with a slight decline for Aberdeen. Inverness, Glasgow and Stirling also saw a decline but still feature in the top 20 most affordable UK cities. In fact, Stirling ranked as the most affordable city in the whole of the UK for the fifth consecutive year.
Ricky Diggins, director at Bank of Scotland said: “It will come as no surprise to anyone looking to buy a home in Scotland that affordability is not improving by much but compared to the rest of the UK, the dream of living in one of our cities is more achievable.
Surprisingly, homes in Edinburgh have become more affordable in the last 12 months, although house prices in our capital continue to be more expensive than in all other Scottish cities.”
Average house price in UK higher than in Scottish cities
In the last five years, the average house price in the UK has increased by 45% to £255,183, compared to 23% for the average house price in Scottish cities. Average house prices in all Scottish cities are now lower than the UK average, compared to 2012 when Aberdeen was 0.2% higher and Edinburgh was 10% higher.
Five of the top 20 most affordable cities in the UK are in Scotland
Stirling (4.03), Londonderry in Northern Ireland (4.1) and Bradford (4.5) are the top three cities in the UK in terms of affordability. Dundee (5.4), Perth (5.4), Glasgow (5.5) and Inverness (5.6) also appear in the top twenty most affordable cities in the UK. Oxford is named as the least affordable city in the UK with an average house price to earnings ratio of 11.5.