Derry is most affordable place in UK - new Halifax report

Derry has topped the UK list of most affordable cities to live in for the third year in a row, a new report found.

Wednesday, 11th August 2021, 12:04 pm

A new report from Halifax found that while the cost of an average city home in the UK is now 8 times earnings, Derry remains the UK’s most affordable city, at 4.7 times earnings.

The least expensive average house prices amongst cities are found in Derry (£155,917) and Hull (£156,924), and the most affordable cities in the top five are Derry followed by Carlisle, Bradford, Sterling and Aberdeen.

Two other cities in Northern Ireland make the top 20 - Lisburn (12th most affordable) and Belfast (16th)/

Skyline, Derry.

The UK’s biggest mortgage lender also revealed that Winchester is now the UK’s least affordable city, prices average 14 times earnings.

Over the past year, the average house price of UK cities has grown by 10.3%, while average earnings for those living and working in cities rose just 2.1%.

As a result, the average home in a UK city now costs 8.1 times average earnings (known as the Price to Earnings, or PE, ratio), according to Halifax, the UK’s biggest mortgage lender.

Russell Galley, Managing Director, Halifax, said: “Winchester is now the UK’s least affordable city, while Londonderry has held its place as most affordable, with the lowest city house prices in the UK. We can see from our research that affordability is significantly better in the North and there are now just two cities - Plymouth and Portsmouth - with better than average affordability in the South.

“Rising house prices have generally continued to outstrip wage growth, which reduces overall affordability, however the picture is mixed for buyers. For city home-movers who want to stay in their area, the level of equity in their current property is likely to be an important factor in how affordable the local area is for them, whereas raising a deposit remains an issue for many first-time buyers. Nevertheless, some areas, like Carlisle, saw affordability improve, and cities like Bradford and Glasgow are some of the more affordable in the country.”

The annual Halifax Bank Affordable Cities Review and tracks housing affordability in 61 cities (including Greater London) across the UK.

The review is based on Lloyds Banking Group’s own housing statistics database and the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Earnings figures used are for the relevant local authority district of each city.