Revealed – The Top 20 Most And Least Affordable UK Cities In 2021

London is actually not the most expensive on the list.
The London cityscape
The London cityscape

UK cities definitely have an expensive reputation – but a new study suggests some have actually become more affordable in the pandemic.

House-buyers in the UK do now spend 8.1 times more than their average salary to secure their homes, according to Halifax’s new findings. This is a steep increase compared to just 10 years ago, when buyers spent just 5.6 times their earnings when purchasing a house.

The good news is the findings also suggested British cities are now slightly more affordable to live in than the UK as a whole.

This may be down to the wave of city-dwellers who flocked to the countryside during the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, triggering an increase in house prices there.

The bad news is, the house price-to-earnings ratio in UK cities has increased steadily over the last eight years.

So which are the least – most – expensive cities to settle down in, according to Halifax?

The following places have been ranked according to their price-to-earnings ratio, a number which is based on the average house price in that city compared to the average annual earnings.

County Derry, Northern Ireland
County Derry, Northern Ireland

The top 20 most affordable cities

1. Londonderry, Northern Ireland, 4.7, £155,917, £33,138

=2. Carlisle, North, 4.8, £163,232, £34,087

=2. Bradford, Yorkshire and the Humber, 4.8, £164,410, £34,219

=4. Stirling, Scotland, 5.4, £208,927, £38,744

=4. Aberdeen, Scotland, 5.4, £205,199, £38,016

=4. Glasgow, Scotland, 5.4, £196,625, £36,205

7. Perth, Scotland, 5.5, £203,229, £36,700

=8. Inverness, Scotland, 5.6, £191,840, £34,373

=8. Hull, Yorkshire and the Humber, 5.6, £156,424, £27,730

10. Dundee, Scotland, 5.8, £181,150, £31,344

11. Sunderland, North, 6.0, £179,567, £29,745

12. Lisburn, Northern Ireland, 6.1, £203,386, £33,138

=13. Salford, North West, 6.2, £211,903, £34,444

=13. Durham, North, 6.2, £196,274, £31,762

=13. Liverpool, North West, 6.2, £215,741, £34,911

=13. Belfast, Northern Ireland, 6.2, £205,228, £33,138

=13. Lancaster, North West, 6.2, £217,392, £35,004

18. Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North, 6.3, £229,434, £36,212

19. Stoke-on-Trent, West Midlands, 6.5, £200,161, £30,698

20. Hereford, West Midlands, 6.6, £316,929, £48,048

Winchester's famous Cathedral
Winchester's famous Cathedral

The top 20 least affordable cities

1. Winchester, South East, 14.0, £630,432, £45,059

2. Oxford, South East, 12.4, £486,928, £39,220

=3. Truro, South West, 12.1, £356,788, £29,558

=3. Bath, South West, 12.1, £476,470, £39,508

5. Chichester, South East, 10.6, £446,899, £37,352

6. Cambridge, East Anglia, 11.9, £482,300, £40,492

7. Brighton and Hove, South East, 11.6, £449,243, £38,737

8. London, South East, 11.0, £564,695, £51,257

=9. St Albans, South East, 10.2, £604,423, £59,391

=9. Chelmsford, South East, 10.2, £424,690, £41,781

11. Salisbury, South West, 10.0, £392,355, £39,154

12. Exeter, South West, 9.9, £323,554, £32,635

13. Leicester, East Midlands, 9.7, £279,080, £28,725

14. Norwich, East Anglia, 9.4, £306,946, £32,632

15. Bristol, South West, 9.3, £346,902, £37,357

=16. Southampton, South East, 9.0, £310,435, £34,429

=16. Canterbury, South East, 9.0, £365,168, £40,565

=16. Gloucester, South West, 9.0, £287,600, £31,987

19. Worcester, West Midlands, 8.8, £303,132, £34,389

20. Cardiff, Wales, 8.7, £276,851, £31,946