For a number of people, getting your first steps onto the property ladder can feel insurmountable. Not only do you have to save a substantial amount of money for a deposit, but in addition, you have to examine where the best area is to take your initial step onto that ladder. That is why affordability is key.
With the average house price in the UK rising 13.2% during the last year, up to £265,668, it is clear to see why these challenges are only getting harder.
Halifax, when looking at the trend, said: “A year on from the first easing of national lockdown restrictions, and the gradual reopening of the housing market, annual growth surged to 9.5%.”
However, the importance of first-time buyers in the housing sector has not been overshadowed.
Managing Director of Halifax, Russell Galley, said: “New buyers are hugely important to the overall health of the UK housing market. Despite a shortage of homes, and the ongoing challenge of raising deposits, we know the number of first-time buyers is moving in the right direction.”
Which country in the UK is the most affordable to live in?
Placed at the top of the affordability chart is Scotland, with five of its cities inside the top ten of affordability. However, lying at the top, as the most affordable city in the UK, according to Halifax’s annual rankings, is Londonderry, with a home in the city costing an average of £155,917. The average salary for the city is £33,138 therefore granting it a price-to-earnings ratio of 4.7x. Scottish cities dominate the table with cities such as Dundee and Glasgow included amongst some of the most affordable places.
The North of England is one of the more affordable segments of country, as the area comprises of six cities and towns with a reputable affordability rating. The city listed amongst the highest in the affordability charts is Carlisle, with homes in the area costing an average of £163,232. The average salary for Carlisle is £33,138 giving the town a price-to-earnings ratio of 4.8x. Other areas which offer comparatively cheaper housing include Hull and Bradford.
Zoopla reports that Cinderford, in the Forest of Dean, is the most affordable location in the south west, with house prices averaging £190,707 or 3.16 times local incomes, with Dover the most affordable place to buy a property in the south east, and Purfleet in Thurrock heading the table in the east of England.
The London borough of Barking and Dagenham offers the best value in the capital, with homes costing around 5.4 times local average pay or £341,432.
Where are the least affordable cities located in the UK?
The South of England is where lies the majority of the most expensive places in the UK, depicting an enormous affordability rating of 26.9%. Predictably, Greater London makes it in the list however doesn’t claim the top spot as Winchester in Hampshire is cast as the least affordable area. The area has an average house price of £630,432 and a price to earnings ratio of 14x, an increase of 8% from the previous year, while the average salary is also notably higher compared to other areas, with a figure of £45,059.
Which cities have experienced the biggest growth in the last decade?
In terms of who had seen the biggest growth, Gloucester tops that list. Located in the South-West of England, Gloucester has seen a growth of 101% in terms of average house price, jumping from £143,365 in 2011 to £287,440 this year.
Greater London has experienced the second largest growth in the last 10 years with prices climbing by 98% from £284,940 in 2011 to £564,695 this year.
When taking into account the whole of the UK, during the past decade, the nation has seen a growth in house prices by 71% from £168,443 in 2011 to £287,440 in 2021.
Top tips on how to find the perfect home
- If you have discovered a house that you like, do some research on the area prior to committing.
- Use reliable services and complete surveys to get a better understanding of the price of the house you have come across.
- If you plan on renovating parts of a house, make sure you have set a budget aside and plan accordingly. Don’t fall into the trap of buying a cheap house, thinking that renovating most of it will come out cheaper. The issue is if you do not plan and budget accurately, then it will culminate in you spending significantly more money on the house that initially planned for.
List of Top 10 most affordable UK cities in 2021
List of Top 10 least affordable UK cities in 2021
- Brighton and Hove
- Greater London
- St. Albans