Anyone familiar with the state of UK house prices at the moment will be surprised to hear that Oxford has been named as the best place for first time buyers to get on the property ladder.
Houses cost £430,000 on average – not exactly an affordable first home, but a new study by Money Supermarket has taken factors that affect other than purchase price into consideration, in order to create a tailored list of locations for first time buyers.
These factors include; crime statistics in the area, average salaries of people who live there and job opportunities.
So what makes Oxford such a great choice? It’s close enough to London to be able to commute for work, average salaries are pretty high in comparison to the rest of the UK, and there are good job opportunities in Oxford itself.
Bath, Wolverhampton, York and Aberdeen also came in the top five.
Can you guess which UK city came last in the list of 35 cities? It’s London, mainly due to rising crime rates and well-documented high property costs. Surprise surprise.
Newry, Hull, Sheffield and Leicester also came in at the bottom of the list.
‘Buying a property for the first time is exciting, but it comes with the hard decision of choosing a location that suits your budget, your job and your lifestyle,’ explains Kevin Pratt, consumer affairs expert at Money Super Market, in the report.
‘What is crucial is that people take the full range of factors into account. The first-time buyer sector is showing signs of life as property prices fall in some areas, thanks to the heat going out of the buy-to-let market. If buyers can be flexible, they stand a better chance of finding somewhere they can afford to purchase.’
While purchase price might not be the only factor UK first time buyers care about, it is a big determining factor. No matter how low the crime rate is or how great the job opportunities are, many people can only buy where they can afford.