A house is likely to be among the priciest purchases you ever make – so, naturally, you should endeavour to get your money’s worth. You probably already have an idea of the criteria most important to you in a house – like its amenities, the number of rooms and, of course, the location.
With so many boxes to tick, you might assume that no low-price properties could possibly meet your needs, but could an array of recent statistics about England’s cheapest housing prove you wrong?
Will you be living alone or with others?
Naturally, one person’s dream home can be another person’s nightmare residence – and, indeed, if you are single and won’t be living with anyone else, you can have very different requirements in property to someone at the head of a large family with many young mouths to feed.
If you are a singleton yet to even get on the property ladder, Sunderland is England’s least expensive area to live, according to research reported by HuffPost. The research was conducted by property site Zoopla, which assessed how, in local authority areas, the expense of one-bedroom flats measured up to local average wages.
In the Wearside city, your mortgage could consume only 9.19% of your wages, with nearby North Tyneside almost as cheap at 10.67%. With both areas within close reach of Newcastle and its abundance of attractions, it’s not hard to see just how far your money can go.
What if you have a family to look after?
As you add more and more children to your brood, your mind could drift to matters such as securing more bedrooms for your next home, which could also benefit from being close to well-rated nurseries. Believe it or not, in some cities, a family home can be yours for under £100,000.
Such homes are, sadly, in scarce supply down south. In research cited by the Express, there were no such residences to be found across 17 southern towns and cities, including London, Brighton, Bristol and Cambridge. Exeter, however, did offer 23 family homes under that price bracket.
Alas, families can afford to be much choosier if they set their sights further north. For example, the research uncovered 628 family homes – classed here as houses with at least three bedrooms – within a five-mile radius of Liverpool’s city centre.
The North East, again, was an impressive performer, as Newcastle-upon-Tyne had the third-highest number of affordable family homes in England, 393. Gateshead, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough weren’t too far behind Newcastle in the rankings.
County Durham: the best of many worlds?
Even the city of Durham, with its stunning castle, cathedral and university, had 262 family homes in this category – and, according to another Express report, the city and other County Durham areas of Peterlee and Ferryhill offer some of the cheapest streets.
Perhaps you could buy a cut-price home locally and then improve it; roofers in Darlington, Bishop Auckland and other County Durham settlements can provide a lot of return for what you pay them.