Winchester Knocks Oxford off the top Spot as the Most Expensive Place to live

first time buyers
Winchester is the least affordable place to live, according to a new survey from Halifax, with a typical home costing £630,432, 14 times the city’s average income of £45,000. Strong house price growth outside of the capital over the past year as people’s priorities have shifted, means places like the Hampshire cathedral city have thrived with mini housing booms.

With many workers no longer having to commute every day and wanting more space in case we face another lockdown, the appeal of the coast and countryside, as well as smaller cities such as Winchester and Chi Chester, has soared.

Indeed, London, long the most expensive place to live, slipped out of Halifax’s top five most unaffordable places to live, for the first time in six years. It was beaten by Oxford, Truro, Bath and Chi Chester. However, while the rest of the country catches up the capital a little, it’s all relative with the average property price rising by 5 per cent in the year to June in London. The average property price in London is now £564,695, way beyond the means of many, particularly first-time buyers.

The good news for borrowers looking for a large mortgage to fund a property purchase, whether in London or elsewhere, is that mortgage rates are at record lows. Many borrowers are therefore finding that they can afford to take on a bigger loan than would have previously been the case. With many lenders now offering sub-1 per cent fixed rates to those with 40 per cent deposits, it has never been a cheaper time to borrow.

However, it is important not to overstretch yourself, as while interest rates show no signs of rising anytime soon, they will go up at some point. It is worth seeking advice as to the best deal for your circumstances from a whole-of-market mortgage broker such as AWS Private Finance, particularly if you need a large mortgage. Do get in touch for more information.
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