Mortgages at their most affordable for a decade

John Fitzsimons
by Lovemoney Staff John Fitzsimons on 19 January 2013  |  Comments 5 comments

The proportion of our disposable income that we put towards our mortgage repayments is at its lowest level in ten years.

Mortgages at their most affordable for a decade

Mortgage payments account for just 28% of income on average according to new research from Halifax.

The study suggests mortgages are now at their most affordable in a decade, and have fallen drastically from a peak of 48% of income in 2007.

The average monthly mortgage payment now stands at £580, with an average monthly take-home wage of £2,062.

Regional differences

Current mortgage payments as a proportion of earners are now lower in all regions of the UK than the long-term average.

However, some regions have benefitted more from lower mortgage costs than others. Payments as a proportion of income have fallen to less than 25% in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Yorkshire and the Humber in the North West.

In contract, they are at 34% in the South East, 35% in the South West and 36% in Greater London.

The ten most affordable local areas

Let’s take a look at exactly which areas are the most affordable to buy a house.

Local Authority District


Mortgage payments as % of disposable earnings


North West


West Dunbartonshire




North West





North Ayrshire



Kingston upon Hull, City of

Yorkshire and The Humber


South Ayrshire



North Lanarkshire



Glasgow City



South Lanarkshire



So seven of the ten most affordable places to buy a property are found within Scotland, with the rest all found in northern England.

The ten least affordable local areas

Local Authority District


Mortgage payments as % of disposable earnings







Hammersmith and Fulham



Mole Valley

South East






South East


Richmond upon Thames







South East





No surprises here, with all of the most expensive places to buy found within London and the South East, bar Cambridge.

What about availability?

It’s all very well mortgages getting cheaper, but that’s not much use if you can’t actually get your hands on them. So what’s mortgage availability like?

The most recent breakdown from the Council of Mortgage Lenders covers the mortgage market in November. During that month there were 52,700 loans handed out for home purchase, up by 6.3% from the previous month and 12.6% year-on-year. Most encouraging of all was the first-time buyer picture – 21,700 mortgages granted, a year-on-year increase of a whopping 24%.

And that’s only likely to continue as low mortgage rates, caused by the Government’s Funding for Lending scheme, entice more buyers into taking the plunge.

What do you think? Has your mortgage become more affordable? Do you think this trend will continue? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below.

Get free mortgage advice from Lovemoney mortgages

This article aims to give information, not advice. Always do your own research and/or seek out advice from an FSA-regulated broker (such as one of our brokers here at, before acting on anything contained in this article.

Finally, we tend to only give the initial rate of a deal in our articles, but any deal which lasts for a shorter period than your mortgage term may revert to the lender's standard variable rate or a tracker rate when the deal ends. Before you take out a deal, you should always try to find out from your lender what its standard variable rate is and how it will be determined in the future. Make sure you take all this information into account when comparing different deals.

Your home or property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

More on mortgages:

Why it will be easier to get a mortgage in 2013

Barclays Family Springboard: buy a house with 5% deposit

The best new mortgages for 2013

How a divorce affects your mortgage

Cut your mortgage costs in 2013

Overpay your mortgage and save thousands

Interest-only mortgages: the banks that will still lend

Save £1,000+ by remortgaging

Five mistakes that mean you'll get the wrong mortgage

Is it worth going to a mortgage broker?

What is a shared ownership scheme?

What is a shared equity scheme?

What is the NewBuy scheme?

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Comments (5)

  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said


    I live in the real world, invent real products and create real jobs for real people who matter to me. I sometimes wish I could do more, but money has never driven me in the least. Two 'unemployable' people I took on as trainees a few years ago are now senior managers in local businesses and my son is running a very profitable business at 18 under my mentoring. I've helped a lot of people setting up businesses and my family keep reminding me that I've never charged enough for my services, but I sleep well at night. I'm not the least bit interested in some nutter who thinks he can reinvent the banking system and was arrested for not paying his council tax. I do hope people research as you suggest.

    Report on 20 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Tanni
    Love rating 92
    Tanni said

    @electricblue. Keep blowing your own trumpet as it'll make you feel wanted and rather smart.

    No one is reinventing banking...he's replicating exactly the same way the banks create money from thin air. Yes money from nothing. You have no idea about money creation, manipulation of derivatives or anything that's not reported on the BBC or Lovemoney. It's people like you who have whilst your greed inspired slumber allowed this country to be robbed of its sovereignty and wealth. Read on.

    Understand what is common law. What is commercial law and what is the UK. Who is governed by these laws.

    This Roger Hayes, the chap who you claim was arrested for not paying his council tax; he actually is a highly trained individual and leads many thousands of people in a group called The British Constituiton group. He was arguing a point in common law, the law of the land. Learn to understand what is learning before preaching otherwise you will only learn that even when you think you are will be wrong as you are closed to understanding and humanity.

    You claim to do a lot for free. Maybe you have forgotten about the people, millions of people who have died without reward; all to protect this country and it's constitution. This same constitution gives you your rights....rights to abuse and mock people aren't in there but we'll let that go.

    Your arguments never offer an alternative. Rather you mock and abuse with word'd make a good liberal/tory/labour puppet I mean politician or newsreader/jouranalist lol.

    This Roger Hayes argued,successfully, his point in law. Do you know how he was arrested? Like a terrorist. He was held for arpund 21 days whilst being intimated and bullied? Checkit out. Do you know how many court cases and hearing were attemded...loads! Do you know that the judge in the case was willingly not applying common law or reading his oath to enforce common law?

    This whole matter relates to rights of freedom,liberty and constitutional law.

    The point being that no one has to pay the council tax. This nation is run on emergency tax measures imposed during our tiff with our American cousins during the civil war. These tax measures were supposed to be temporary but have taken a permanent hold. That's breaking news to you...300 years later!

    The UK is a company...yes read your history and understand marine and mercantile law. Then figure out that the queen and her courts are supposed to protect us under common law, yet the courts use statutes derived from laws applicable to commerce and non human entities ( companies). Humans take priority over companies...breaking news again for you.

    As a company who is bust since 1914 the laws and enforceable powers of this countries legal system are under emergency powers? know that a bankrupt or insolvent business cannot trade like a solvent entity...particularly when it comes to enforcing tax laws that are unconstitutional and against the very law that it uses to prosecute....boom straight over your head. The UK is this company.

    Do your research and like I keep saying...have an open mind and understand your history. Don't think I'm having a go at you, on the contrary I'm explaining and reminding you that there is a bigger world out there then the BBC or parliament channel.

    I wonder if you ever checked out Max Keiser does Westminister? Probably not as it wasn't on the BBC.

    Sir you need to understand that the history and reality you live in is a false reality as dictated to you by bullying media and corporations including our incompetent political leaders.. The reality is that banks are too big to fail and dictate along with multinational corporations how our world,our country should be run and how you should think and live! Another breaking news story!

    Read the definition of sovereign and freedom. Understand that definition and it's implications in reality..This nation is not sovereign as we have handed over powers to EU and UN and World Bank IMF. Try to get a grip with reality rather then be stuck in a cocoon of doctrinal bull pooh fed to you by the world you think you live in. This may go straight over your head...but that's ok as its common for sheeple and zombified clever people who are too foolish to think. Wake up and think for yourself rather being told what and how to think.

    The reality is that the hard fought freedoms of the constitution have all but been erroded whilst people like you sit smugly thinking they've made a difference...a difference? nada nada ba ba sheep.

    Read the definition of sovereign and then argue your point ; the banks are brilliant, its brilliant to to be in the top twenty rather then be number one? Its brilliant to have homes repossesed, brilliant to have students paying for thier education, brilliant to have business dictate what is good for our country, brilliant to have sold this nation down the pan, brilliant that we are in recession, brilliant we are fighting wars for other countries, brilliant we rely on other countries for our growth and food, brilliant that the population is a commodity that is paying for the bail outs...its called economic slavery!

    Wake up as life as you know it is not brilliant..step outside the cocoon of false reality and pinch yourself...start thinking for yourself rather then being influenced to think what corporations want you to think...all is fine and you are making a make me laugh not.

    This is no conspiracy but mere facts which deluded individuals cannot see. You are not free....just the fuse in the brain is free/loose which makes you think you are free.

    Your words do not offend me, rather I amuse at the arrogance and ignorance of so called smart people who are lambs and sheeple to the ba away electricblue...sing the blues even.

    Definition of sovereign. understand what is money creation ( how banks create money and derivatives from thin air literally ). Understand your Constituiton and read your bill of rights. Understand common law and commercial law. One law for for business.

    That's enough to keep you going for atleast six months.

    Report on 21 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves

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