Argyll and Bute has seen the sharpest rise in average property prices anywhere in Scotland, according to new research.

A study by chartered surveyor Walker Fraser Steele, found that the authority experienced a spike of 18.1 per cent in the average cost of a property.

In July 2022, the average cost of property in Argyll and Bute was £228,938, compared to £193,813 one year earlier.

It was also a rise compared to the previous month, with the average cost of property £223,640 in June 2022.

Helensburgh has been at the heart of the authority's rise in prices, with one four-bedroom villa overlooking the Clyde selling for £850,000 in July £200,000 more than the property's asking price.

It means Argyll and Bute is the 11th most expensive authority in Scotland in which to buy a property.

Across the country, 11 local authorities experienced record average prices.

Scott Jack, regional development director at Walker Fraser Steele, commented: "Records continue to be broken as the average price paid for a house in Scotland in July 2022 reached £224,035, establishing yet another record price for the country the thirteenth occasion that this has happened in the last thirteen months.

"It is tempting to wonder how long this can continue but every time we pause for breath, prices rise again.

"This price is some £18,600 higher than that seen in July 2021, indicating that prices have risen by 9.1 per cent on an annual basis. This annual rate has slowed from the 10.6 per cent growth seen in June, but that month was assisted by a near £3,000 fall in prices which occurred twelve months earlier in June 2021, meaning that the base point for measuring June's growth rate started from a particularly low level.

"There is evidence of a fall in transactions in this month's data which a number of surveyors in Scotland believe is a regular feature of June and July's housing market, coinciding as it does with the school holidays, and at a time when, emerging from the pandemic, people have been very keen to get away.

"Interestingly in terms of the type of property that is selling for higher prices, the 'race for space' may be in abeyance as people return to the suburbs and semi-detached properties that suit hybrid working."

Neighbouring West Dunbartonshire remains one of the most affordable areas in Scotland to buy a property.

The research found that the authority had the second lowest average house price in Scotland, behind only Inverclyde.

But West Dunbartonshire also witnessed a record annual rise in the local average property price, of 11.3 per cent.

The Walker Fraser Steele Acadata HPI (Scotland) uses the actual prices at which every residential property in Scotland was transacted, including prices for properties bought with cash, using the data provided by Registers of Scotland as opposed to valuation estimates or asking price.