First Time

Buyers Index

Buying your first ever home is more difficult than ever before and, in some areas of the country, may seem like nothing more than a pipedream.

The regional disparities in average house prices and annual income can be huge depending on where you live in the UK, but where works out as the most and least affordable to get your foot on that first rung of the property ladder?

To find out, we've divided the amount needed for a 15% deposit by average annual income in each of the UK's most populated towns and cities to create a deposit to income ratio (the lower the better), as well as estimating the average monthly mortgage repayments in each too.

It's perhaps no surprise to see that most of the most affordable towns and cities were found in the North, where although earnings are usually lower, house prices are too.

Do bear in mind that on top of the costs outlined below, you'll also need to make sure you have enough funds to cover additional costs such as conveyancing. So it is really important to shop around and compare the best conveyancing quotes.

The most affordable cities

for first time buyers ranked

Key: Rank Town/City Region Median Salary Average House Price Amount Required for 15% Deposit Estimated Monthly Mortgage Repayment Deposit to Income Ratio

for first time buyers mapped

Deposit to Income Ratio: 0.5-1 1.01-1.5 1.51-2 2+

Click on the dots to find out where each location ranks plus the deposit to earnings ratio


Annual earnings were sourced from the Office for National Statistics' data on ‘Earnings and hours worked, place of residence by local authority' (ASHE Table 8).

Average house price was sourced for each town or city from Zoopla's latest house price estimates.

Deposit to income ratio calculated by dividing the amount required for a 15% deposit by the median salary (while many lenders traditionally would offer first-time buyers a mortgage with a 10% or even 5% deposit, the COVID-19 outbreak has seen most up this to 15%).

Monthly mortgage repayments were calculated using the Money Advice Service's Mortgage Calculator, based on a 30-year mortgage with an interest rate of 2% (again, based on the fact that rates are currently exceptionally low due to COVID-19).