Housing

These are the UK’s most affordable cities for solo buyers

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Lauren Geall
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Bradford

Looking to get on the property ladder as a solo buyer in 2021? Here’s where to start your search.

For many of us, getting onto the housing ladder feels like a far-off dream. The odds aren’t stacked in our favour, are they? Not only are rent prices exorbitantly high (making saving for a deposit a challenge), but house prices remain pretty unaffordable in many areas of the country.

This is especially true when you’re a solo buyer. Without a partner, friend or family member to split the costs of a property with, finding the funds you need for a deposit (let alone all the other costs that come with buying a home) can be even more difficult.

But that doesn’t mean buying a home as a solo buyer is impossible. Although they may be few and far between, there are a number of places across the UK where buying on your own is possible.

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That’s where new research from estate agents Coulters Property comes in. To identify the most and least affordable places for solo buyers across the UK, they looked at 30 of the UK’s most populated towns and cities, ranking them based on estimated mortgage and living costs as well as average wages in that area.

So, what is the most affordable UK city for solo buyers? It’s Bradford. 

According to Coulters Property, an average one-bed property in the city costs £67,370, compared to an average cost of £454,937 in London (which unsurprisingly took the least affordable spot). 

A woman holding keys in front of packed boxes
Bradford, Derby and Belfast are the most affordable UK cities for solo buyers.

The average cost of living (£597 a month) and monthly earnings (£1,983) also make Bradford a great place for solo buyers – as a percentage of earnings, mortgage and living expenses come in at 43.8%, the lowest in the UK.

The other most affordable spots identified by the research were Derby in the East Midlands, where the average one bed property costs £86,578, and Belfast in Northern Ireland, where the same size property costs £99,480.

Other cities in the top-10 most affordable spots include Glasgow, Aberdeen, Stoke-on-Trent and Leicester, followed by Leeds, Liverpool and Sheffield.

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As we’ve already mentioned, on the other end of the affordability scale was London (where, on average, mortgage and living expenses cost 98.7% of monthly earnings) followed by Brighton & Hove (with an average one-bed property cost of £249,902) and Reading (with an average one-bed property cost of £226,862).

Although those latter numbers are pretty stark, it’s comforting to know that there are still places where solo buyers can buy a home – you just need to know where to look.

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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.