SINGLE Brits looking to get on the property ladder may want to head to Newcastle-under-Lyme, North Tyneside or Bradford in their search for an affordable place.
Online estate agents Zoopla has crunched the numbers to reveal the most affordable places in England and Wales outside London for those looking to buy by themselves.
It found Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire was the cheapest option, with buyers needing to sacrifice 10.84 per cent of their monthly wage typically in mortgage payments to own a home there.
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.
In contrast, Cambridge was found to be the least affordable area for single buyers, with mortgage payments taking up more than a third - 36 per cent - of monthly wages.
Southern areas including Brighton, Bath and Windsor also appear in the least affordable areas to buy.
How to get help buying a house
THERE are several government schemes available to help you get on the housing ladder.
- Help to Buy loan: This scheme is for those who have a 5 per cent deposit, and is only available on new-build properties that are worth less than £600,000. The government lends you up to 20 per cent of the property value (interest-free for the first five years) which gives you access to cheaper mortgages. You will need to pay this back at the end of the mortgage or when you sell.
- Starter Homes: First-time buyers under the age of 40 can access this new scheme. You’ll get a 20 per cent discount on the market value of the property (new-build only) but you cannot sell or let the property for five years after you buy it.
- Shared ownership: This scheme is available to non-homeowners who earn £80,000 a year or less (£90,000 in London). People can buy a share of a home from a housing association and continue to rent the remainder. Buyers will need a ten per cent deposit as well as money to cover stamp duty and other fees. You’ll also need to find a mortgage lender that is willing to lend on shared ownership properties
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 per cent 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.
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 per cent) of their monthly wage, 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".
A shock report from the Institute of Fiscal Studies revealed there has been a huge collapse in home ownership for those on middle incomes in the last 20 years due to soaring prices and stagnant wages.
Just over a quarter (27 per cent) of those aged between 25 and 34 earning between £22,200 and £30,000 own their own place, compared to 65 per cent in 1996.
Last week, new research from consumer group Which? found that 22 per cent of first-time buyers have moved back in with their parents in order to save for a deposit.
Potential buyers will have to fork-out nearly £50,000 for a deposits, according to official figures.
And to help cut the cost of buying, friends are starting to chip-in together and help each other onto the property ladder.