Cheapest Places for Affordable Housing In the UK

James Beattie By James Beattie 11 Min Read

Higher mortgage rates mean that first-time buyers are finding it harder to get on the property ladder. Many people are looking outside the box to help them afford their first home. A great tip is to move to a cheaper area of the UK. But which areas does that include and what is it like to live in them? We’ve answered this question for you.

Quick Overview
Most of the cheapest places for affordable housing in the UK are in Scotland, with 8 out of 10 making the list. But the top spot belongs to the Shildon, in the North-East of England. London is still the most expensive place to live. But if you have to be there for work, Barking is the cheapest place to buy a house in London.

Why Should I Look for the Cheapest Places to Buy? 

House prices are still steadily going up and mortgage rates are rising. It is much more expensive to buy a home than it was at the turn of the century and unfortunately, it doesn’t look like this will change any time soon. Young couples are worried about being stuck renting forever. However, there is a way you can get on the property ladder sooner – by looking for affordable housing in some of the cheapest places to buy in the UK.

Some of these areas are hidden gems, in lovely historic towns, overlooking golden beaches or surrounded by beautiful countryside. It’s well worth getting an idea of where you might be able to afford to buy a house. After all, you could fall in love with a part of the UK you’ve never even thought of moving to.  

Where are the Cheapest Places for Affordable Housing in the UK?

In the table below you can see the list of places with the cheapest houses in the UK based on the House Price to earnings ratio.

House Price To Earning Ratio = Median Value Of A Home / Average Annual Income Of A Couple

Postal town and regionMedian value of a homeAverage annual income of a coupleHouse price to earnings ratio
Cumnock, Scotland£79,030£75,6651.04
Shildon, North East£69,650£65,4381.06
Greenock, Scotland£93,790£76,7001.22
Saltcoats, Scotland£93,190£74,9491.24
Ardrossan, Scotland£94,170£74,9491.26
Girvan, Scotland£102,130£80,4261.27
Irvine, Scotland£95,965£74,9491.28
Port Glasgow, Scotland£98,710£76,7001.29
Peterlee, North East£85,300£65,4381.30
Wishaw, Scotland£98,695£75,3341.31
Zoopla Home Value Data October 2023, OnS Income Data September 2023
Cheapest House Prices In The UK

We hear a lot about sky-high London prices in the news, so you might be surprised with how affordable property is in some tucked-away corners of the UK. This is why we’ve put together a list of the top 10 cheapest places for affordable housing in the UK. Here we have ordered the houses in order of house price.

1. Shildon, North East

A small, historic town in county Durham, Shildon boasts the first railway station. It’s a quiet place. But only 13 miles away from Durham itself, Shildon is a perfect commuter town for people who work in the city.

Median house price: £69,650

2. Cumnock, Scotland

The number 2 spot has been taken by our first location in Scotland. Cumnock is a small town just south of Glasgow. It is only a 30 minute drive to the sea. If you have ever wanted to live with access to a city and the coast, it could be a great place for you to consider. 

Median house price: £79,030

3. Peterlee, North East

Also in county Durham, Peterlee is a small town on the East Coast. It’s great if you like to be on a wild coastline and it also boasts a castle. 

Median house price: £85,300

4. Saltcoats, Scotland

Our third coastal town on the list, Saltcoats is an hour’s drive to Glasgow. Its golden, sandy beaches and local islands make it a popular holiday resort. You could even rent a room in your house out for some extra cash during the summer.

Median house price: £93,190

5. Greenock, Scotland

Greenock is only a short way up the coast from our last entry, Saltcoats. This is for somebody who wants a bit easier access to a city, since it is only 40 minutes away from Glasgow by car. You also don’t get a flood of tourists in the summer, so it is a more peaceful alternative to Saltcoats.

Median house price: £93,790

6. Ardrossan, Scotland

Ardrossan is the town next door to Saltcoats. As they have both grown in size and popularity over the years, they have merged with each other, but still retain different townships. Androssan has a historic port which is a popular gateway to the beautiful islands the area has to offer.

Median house price: £94,170

7. Irvine, Scotland

If you’re looking for something a little bigger, try Ivine. Within a stone’s throw of Ardrossan and Saltcoats, Ivine has more of a lively town centre. It still has good access to a popular sandy beach. 

Median house price: £95,965

8. Wishaw, Scotland

Wishaw is a typical Glasgow commuter town – you’re looking at a 30 minute commute if you work in the centre of Scotland’s largest city. But with prices a lot cheaper than Glasgow and with easier access to the countryside, you might want to consider settling in Wishaw.

Median house price: £98,695

9. Port Glasgow, Scotland

Port Glasgow isn’t in Glasgow, like the name might suggest. It is actually on the North-West coast. It used to be the ship building centre of the world and remnants of the old trade are still dotted around the town.

Median house price: £98,710

10. Girvan, Scotland

Our final place on the list is, surprise surprise, another Scottish coastal town. Girvan is the only town in a wide stretch of Scottish coast that boasts some of the most beautiful views in the UK. Nearby is Galloway Forest Park, making this a great area for nature lovers. 

Median house price: £102,130

What if I Need to Stay in London?

By far the largest city in the UK, lots of people work in London. Many people also don’t want to move to the middle of nowhere and give up the convenience of having everything they need on hand. Balancing a lengthy commute to work with affording to buy a home in the nation’s capital can also be tricky. If these scenarios apply to you, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered with a list of the top 5 most affordable parts of London to buy a house in.

1. Barking

Barking is a decent-sized London borough that sits just on the edge of Essex. Known for its historic centre and abbey, you might find Barking a bit more relaxed than Central London. House prices are definitely a lot cheaper!

Median house price: £380,20

2. Croydon

Croydon is a town in South London with easy links into the city. It is one of the largest commercial districts of London and boasts great nightlife and shopping centres. If you are looking for somewhere with lots of options for eating out and shopping without breaking the bank, Croydon might be the place for you.

Median house price: £415,20

3. Greenwich

Historic Greenwich is the site of Greenwich park, perfect if you want to mix in a bit of greenery with living in a major city. People come from all over the world to see the location of Greenwich Mean Time and for Greenwich’s interesting maritime history. 

Median house price: £441,40

4. Lewisham

Lewisham is a small area that is also located in South London. It is considered to be one of the best value areas in Zone 2 of London and enjoys DLR access to Canary Wharf. 

Median house price: £444,70

5. Newham

The final area on our London list, Newham is the area surrounding and north of London City Airport. It is very convenient if you travel a lot. More than half the people who live there were actually born outside the UK, leading to an interesting mix of cultures. If you want to live in a diverse area, Newham might be the one for you. 

Median house price: £449,70

Final Thoughts

It is important to think carefully about where you buy a house. But don’t be afraid to explore new areas of the UK. You could find the perfect place to settle down if you are willing to look outside of the areas you know well. 

Read More From MoneySprout:

Share This Article
I'm passionate about personal finance and making money. Currently trying to FIRE solely by building online assets. Grew my stock portfolio to £86,000 by 26.
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *