Pitlochry in Perthshire has been revealed as the most popular place to house hunt, having seen an increase of 50.2 per cent in the number of people searching for homes to buy between 2019 and 2020.
Rebecca Butler, Branch Manager at J & H Mitchell and advertiser at Rightmove, said: “Pitlochry is a beautiful place to live with magnificent scenery and we’ve seen a massive rise in demand since the first lockdown was imposed last year.
“Every call I’ve taken and every email I’ve received since last spring is from people looking to move out of larger towns and cities across Scotland, and also from south of the border in England, looking for more land, more space, and a rural lifestyle.”
Following Pitlochry, Rightmove identified East Linton in East Lothian as the second most popular place to search for houses on the market, with an increase of 40.1 per cent in people searching in this area.
Jack Rowberry, Property Sales Manager at Gilson Gray, and another Rightmove advertiser, said: “Whilst East Linton has always been a popular town, it has grown in popularity since the covid crisis took hold and the option to work from home became more and more prominent.
“As we continue to navigate Covid-19 in 2021, there may be a wider audience, such as those in city centre dwellings seeking a semi-rural lifestyle, and price-wise, East Linton offers good value compared to nearby coastal towns.”
Ullapool, Dunkeld and Newtonmore also were featured at the top of the list having seen significant rises in the number of people searching for properties for sale.
Ullapool in Ross-shire saw a rise of 36.8 percent, searches in Dunkeld in Perthshire rose by 33.2 per cent, and in Newtonmore in Inverness-shire, a rise of 32.2 per cent was recorded between 2019 and 2020.
A rise in searches for rental properties was also evident during the pandemic.
Dunbar in East Lothian, saw the highest jump in the rental sector with an annual increase of 32.6 per cent in searches for homes to rent in the area.
Glasgow was next on the list with a rise of 19.5 per cent, followed by Edinburgh which saw an increase of 19 per cent in its rental property searches.
Rightmove’s Director of Property Data, Tim Bannister, said: “The property market overcame many unexpected challenges in 2020, most notably with agents adapting and evolving the way they worked to ensure that people could still move home safely.
"Spending more time at home last year gave lots of people the impetus to reassess their housing needs, and coupled with the stamp duty holiday, many people had extra motivation to move home."This shift translated into record levels of demand, which is reflected in these big increases in property searches, and has given us a list of the most popular places to live in Scotland.”