First-time buyers could potentially make a saving of £2,268 per year on average if they were able to get on the housing ladder rather than rent - provided they can raise a £51,000 deposit - research has found.
The study, from Santander Mortgages, weighed up the potential cost of home-owners' monthly mortgage payments against what they could expect to pay out by renting.
It found that, across the UK, there were potential savings to be made by being on the property ladder.
But it also discovered that the average first-time buyer deposit needed is £51,9052.
Once on the property ladder, first-time buyers could expect their monthly mortgage repayments to come to £723 on average - compared with an average rent of £912 per household, the report found.
This means home-owners could save an average of £189 a month - or £2,268 a year - compared with renters, it said.
First-time buyers in London could potentially make the biggest saving by getting on the property ladder, Santander found.
It said the average monthly rent there is £289 higher than monthly mortgage payments - or a potential saving of nearly £3,500 per year.
But this would be based on first-time buyers in London needing to raise a deposit of nearly £135,000, according to the calculations.
Santander found the smallest difference between rent and mortgage payments is in the East of England, at £43 per month - or just over £500 a year.
The research, which used average rents from the Homelet index and Office for National Statistics (ONS) house price figures, made several assumptions about a first-time buyer's mortgage payments, including that they would have a 24% deposit, a mortgage rate of 2.48% and be paying off what they owe over 25 years.
Miguel Sard, managing director of mortgages at Santander UK, said: "Of course, buying a property is a major financial investment with up-front costs to consider, but long-term the financial benefits can be significant.
"With annual savings averaging well over £2,000, this can really mount up over time and, of course, once the mortgage is paid off, you have a valuable asset to show for it.
"Getting independent advice and looking for competitive rates, is crucial to get the right mortgage to meet potential home-owners individual needs."
Here are the costs of buying versus renting, according to Santander, with the average rent followed by the average first-time buyer house price, the average first-time buyer deposit, the average monthly first-time buyer mortgage repayment, the amount someone could be better off by per month by buying and how much they could be better of by per year:
- London, £1,569, £420,500, £134,660, £1,280, £289, £3,468
- Northern Ireland, £629, £131,076, £30,435, £451, £178, £2,136
- North West, £689, £149,816, £29,877, £537, £152, £1,824
- Scotland, £644, £142,329, £28,311, £510, £134, £1,608
- Yorkshire and the Humber, £623, £143,810, £27,527, £521, £102, £1,224
- West Midlands, £679, £168,287, £35,207, £596, £83, £996
- South West, £799, £212,062, £50,514, £723, £76, £912
- South East, £998, £276,807, £67,866, £935, £63, £756
- Wales, £596, £146,557, £27,135, £535, £61, £732
- North East, £509, £123,189, £22,712, £450, £59, £708
- East Midlands, £622, £161,682, £32,816, £577, £45, £540
- East of England, £905, £252,158, £59,553, £862, £43, £516