Home affordability in cities throughout the UK has deteriorated over the last 12 months to the worst levels in 6 years as buyers struggle to match their income with rising prices, a report by Lloyds Bank has showed.
Perhaps surprisingly for some Oxford has surpassed London in being the least affordable city where to buy a house, with the average home price currently £361,469 – a staggering 11 times the gross average annual wage in the area.
A stark comparison, Stirling in Scotland currently holds the title of being the most affordable city, where the average home costs around £158,645 – still 4 times the gross annual earnings.
Following closely behind Oxford is Winchester and Cambridge, where homes cost around 10 times local earnings and Chichester, Brighton and Hove where they cost more than 9 times earnings. A home within the housing hot potato that is Greater London, would cost around 8.75 times average earnings.
Here is a list of the UK's 15 least affordable cities according the bankers, with the price to local earnings ratio included:
- Oxford, South East - 10.89
- Winchester, South East - 10.11
- Cambridge, East Anglia - 9.76
- Chichester, South East - 9.19
- Brighton and Hove, South East - 9.10
- Bath, South West - 8.83
- Greater London - 8.75
- Truro, South West - 8.61
- Salisbury, South West - 8.43
- Exeter, South West - 8.04
- Southampton, South East - 7.55
- Bristol, South West - 7.02
- Lichfield, West Midlands - 6.95
- Norwich, East Anglia - 6.88
- Canterbury, South East - 6.85
By comparison, here are the most affordable:
- Stirling, Scotland - 3.85
- Londonderry, Northern Ireland - 3.92
- Lancaster, North West - 4.03
- Bradford, Yorkshire and the Humber - 4.17
- Hereford, West Midlands - 4.42
- Belfast, Northern Ireland - 4.49
- Newry, Northern Ireland - 4.51
- Salford, North West - 4.56
- Lisburn, Northern Ireland - 4.63
- Durham, North - 4.70
- Stoke on Trent, West Midlands - 4.76
- Sunderland, North - 4.78
- Glasgow, Scotland - 4.81
- Ely, East Anglia - 4.90
- Hull, Yorkshire and the Humber - 4.96
The report illustrated the result of an inflating economy on a housing stock becoming increasingly unobtainable to a first time buyer, however it also highlighted a continuing South-North divide; 17 out of the 20 least affordable cities listed above just happen to be located in the South of England.