UK mortgage affordability flat but London bucks trend: Halifax

In London, average mortgage repayments as a proportion of disposable earnings rose from 39.5 to 46.8 per cent in the 10 years to Q4 2018 – the only region in the UK where affordability moved in this direction.

The data show that the average mortgage affordability across the UK has remained at 30 per cent of a person’s disposable earnings since 2009.

The South East had the second highest proportion of disposable income spent on mortgage repayments, at 38.8 per cent in Q4 2018, according to data collected by Halifax

The top ten least affordable areas to take out a mortgage in the UK were all found in London and the South East, adds the lender.

Meanwhile, Scotland posted the lowest mortgage repayments to disposable income ratio, at 18.2 per cent, followed by Northern Ireland, at 19.3 per cent.

Looking at local areas, Brent in Q4 2018 had the worst disposable income to mortgage repayments ratio, with 67.8 per cent of earnings going towards a mortgage. This was followed by Haringey at 64.6 per cent.

In contrast, Copeland had the best disposable income to mortgage repayments ratio at 13.2 per cent, followed by West Dunbartonshire in Scotland, at 15.6 per cent.

Data from the office for national statistics released earlier this week also points out that mortgage affordability has remained static in the UK in recent times.

Halifax mortgage director Andy Bickers comments: “Despite rising house prices and interest rates, the average UK earnings have also risen in line, meaning that national affordability has remained broadly flat.

“This is good news for first-time buyers, homeowners and a boost to the housing market.”

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