Sunderland is top for getting on the property ladder

Estate agents sale boards on Eglinton Street North, Monkwearmouth.

Estate agents sale boards on Eglinton Street North, Monkwearmouth.

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SUNDERLAND is one of the most affordable cities in the UK for housebuyers, according to a new report.

The study by job and property search engine Adzuna revealed that first-time buyers should head to northern locations such as Sunderland, where average property prices at £159,286 are only two-and-a-half times the average couple’s earnings.

It was ranked just behind Belfast and Hull in the league table.

Adzuna co-founder Andrew Hunter said: “With clear indicators of house price stagnation across the UK, pockets of opportunity are springing up around the country for those looking to pick up a bargain.”

Adzuna calculated the affordability of areas by looking at average salaries for the top 50 cities.

The data was compared to property asking prices and typical mortgage multiples across the UK to produce an “Affordability Index” for house hunters.

Elsewhere, the study showed that bargain hunters should set their sights on West Midlands cities such as Coventry.

Portsmouth was the most affordable southern city, with 64 per cent of properties within budget for local salaries.

The research showed that 91 per cent of homes in Belfast were within financial reach for first-time buyers.

While luxury homes can fetch up to £50million in the capital, Londoners’ high incomes meant it was only the 10th least affordable city to buy in Britain.

London properties have become less and less affordable in the past 12 months, with the average home now seven times average earnings.

Winchester, Chichester and Guildford were the most unaffordable towns and cities in the UK.

A typical home in Winchester now sells for eight times earnings at £439,547.

Mr Hunter added: “It’s fascinating to get such a clear view of the differences in home affordability across the UK by combining the data from our property and jobs search engines.”