Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Housing Ladder in Reach for Buyers; Stats Show Clear Divide between the North and the South

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Housing Ladder in Reach for Buyers; Stats Show Clear Divide between the North and the South

Article excerpt

Byline: IAN ROBSON Reporter ian.robson@trinitymirror.com

AFFORDABLE house prices in the North East region are the most improved in the country, according to a new survey.

Yorkshire Building Society said the region shows the biggest change since the credit crunch 10 years ago.

The survey reveals lower prices in almost every part of the region except North Tyneside compared to a decade ago.

Experts linked house prices and pay in every local authority area to arrive at a "house prices to earnings ratio" expressed as a percentage.

They said average affordability in the region as a whole has improved by almost +26% in the decade.

The best town in the North East and the sixth best in the country was named as Hartlepool at +31.9% But other places, such as Newcastle at +26%, were not far behind.

The figures compare to a -38% figure in London highlighting a North-South divide.

Analysis by Yorkshire Building Society compared the change in local house prices versus earnings ratios over 10 years.

It revealed many areas in London and the south are out of reach for firsttime buyers.

But househunters in the North East have a better chance of getting on the housing ladder.

Andrew McPhillips, Yorkshire Building Society Chief Economist, said the data was not surprising.

He said: "Unsurprisingly, the data shows that there is a distinct divide between the north and south of the country when it comes to housing affordability, but this has become even more pronounced since the financial crash.

"Across London and large swathes of southern England, which were already some of the most unaffordable parts of the country, it has become increasingly difficult for first-time buyers and those wanting to move up the housing ladder to be able to buy their first or next home.

"However, the North of England, Wales and Scotland present a different picture entirely, with many places becoming more affordable than they were before the credit crunch. …

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