HOUSE prices in Scotland are forecast to soar by more than 25 per cent in the next five years.
Experts say a new property boom will see the average price of a home north of the Border rise by nearly £50,000 between now and 2018.
Prices will jump by 27.6 per cent from £172,000 to £220,000 in that period, according to a new report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR).
A new Scottish Government “Help to Buy” scheme, which came into effect yesterday, is expected to help drive up prices by providing 20 per cent loans for first-time buyers and so-called “second steppers” moving on from their first home.
CEBR said the improving economy and better mortgage deals had also boosted the market.
Report author Daniel Solomon said: “The housing market recovery is finally moving beyond London and the south-east. This should make homeowners up and down the country feel that bit wealthier, supporting consumer confidence.
“Government support and an improving economic climate will provide an invigorating shot in the arm for the housing market over the coming years.”
But he said talk of a house price bubble was premature.
Scottish house sales are already rising, with figures last month showing a 27 per cent increase in property transactions in July.