Most affordable locations for solo home buyers revealed

People who are single and looking to get onto the property ladder may want to consider Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire, North Tyneside or Bradford in their search for more affordable options, research suggests.

Zoopla calculated the most affordable places in England and Wales outside London for solo buyers - and found Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire came out top, with buyers needing to sacrifice 10.84% of their monthly wage typically in mortgage payments to own a home there.

Cambridge was identified as the least affordable area for single buyers, with mortgage payments there taking up over a third (36.14%) of monthly wages.

Blackpool from the air
Blackpool from the air

The research was based on analysing the prices of one-bed flats - the property type a buyer who was single may be looking for - across England and Wales.

It assumed that buyers would have a 15% deposit to put down and would be paying off their mortgage over 25 years. Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures local earnings figures were used to make the calculations.

North Tyneside and Bradford came second and third on the list of the most affordable areas, with Kirklees, Blackpool and the East Riding of Yorkshire also in the top 10.

While northern areas dominated the most affordable list, southern areas including Brighton, Bath and Windsor appeared on the least affordable top 10 rundown.

While London was excluded from the top-10 lists, single buyers determined to own a home in the capital would need to set aside more than half (57.35%) of their monthly wage, the research found.

Single buyers in Kensington and Chelsea would face a mortgage gobbling up 82.44% of their monthly earnings, while those in Westminster would typically need to set aside 82.12% of their monthly wages on mortgage payments, the research found.

Lawrence Hall, a spokesman for Zoopla, said: "Buying a property is a notoriously expensive process, and those looking to purchase a home on their own will likely feel the pressure all the more."

He said the findings for London highlight "just how eye-wateringly expensive the London property market is for single buyers, especially in central London".

Here are the 10 least expensive areas for single buyers across England and Wales, according to Zoopla, with the proportion of mortgage payments eating up monthly wages:

1. Newcastle-under-Lyme, 10.84%
2. North Tyneside, 10.92%
3. Bradford, 11.79%
4. Kirklees, 12.34%
5. Blackpool, 12.48%
6. East Riding of Yorkshire, 12.69%
7. Wakefield, 12.85%
8. Derby, 12.89%
=9. Wirral, 12.97%
=9. Sandwell, 12.97%

And here are the 10 most expensive areas for single buyers across England and Wales, according to Zoopla, with the proportion of mortgage payments eating up monthly wages:

1. Cambridge, 36.14%
2. Hertsmere, 35.85%
3. Brighton and Hove, 35.56%
4. Bath and North East Somerset, 35.14%
5. Slough, 33.69%
=6. Epsom and Ewell, 33.10%
=6. Spelthorne, 33.10%
8. Epping Forest, 33.07%
9. Oxford, 33.02%
10. Windsor and Maidenhead, 32.74%

Here are the proportions of mortgage payments eating up monthly wages for a single buyer by region, according to Zoopla, ranked from lowest to highest:

1. North East England, 14.64%
2. Yorkshire and the Humber, 14.75%
3. East Midlands, 14.93%
4. Wales, 16.73%
5. North West England, 17.82%
6. West Midlands, 18.12%
7. South West England, 21.41%
8. South East England, 25.35%
9. East of England, 25.67%
10. London, 57.35%

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