Being a home-owner comes at quite a large a cost. Let’s face it, finding cheap places to live nowadays can be a challenge. If you are hunting for the cheapest place to buy a house in the UK, we have some surprising news for you! According to statistics released by the Nationwide House Price Index at the end of 2018, house prices were falling steadily in London. Don’t get too excited though, the statistics still show that London certainly isn’t on our list of the cheapest places to buy property in Britain.
What the property experts are saying about North UK
If you really want to find a good deal, houses in the North of the UK are selling at very low prices. In fact, the average home costs in the region of £125,000. The drop-in property price is quite astounding when you consider that this is the cheapest that houses in the North have been for the past 13 years! And those who want to see for themselves how cheap the property is are encouraged to make contact with local estate agents in the area they are interested in purchasing in.
Despite cheap houses in the North, buying property is still difficult for youngsters
First time property buyers, considered “youngsters” in the property industry, are still finding it hard to get the credit required for their first purchase. In the past 3 years, the minimum average income required by potential property owners has increased by a whopping 18%. Pushing the minimum income requirement to buy a house to £53,000!
It is interesting to note that the average age of house buyers in the UK increased by 7 years from the 1960’s to 2018! In fact, a very interesting article published by the Independent just last year stated that just under 60 years ago in 1960, the average home buyer (first time buyers no less) was just 23 years old and needed to pay a deposit of £595. This is the equivalent of about £12,738 in today’s money terms. And nowadays it’s almost unheard of for 23-year olds to purchase property for the first time!
Where should I start house hunting in the UK?
You will find out with a bit of investigative work and dedication to research, that there are various areas across the UK that offer more affordable housing options than the rest of the country. According to an article on Tough Nickel, there are 15 places where you can expect to buy the cheapest houses in the UK. The article lists the following areas where cheap 3-bedroom homes are typically on sale:
- Grimsby, Lincolnshire
- Stanley, County Durham
- Rhondda, Glamorgan
- Leeds, West Yorkshire
- Belfast and Antrim
- Sheffield, South Yorkshire
- Swansea, South Wales
Did you know? The cheapest house in UK sold in June 2018
House Beautiful released an article stating that data had revealed that the cheapest house in the UK sold back in June 2018 in North East England. Interested to know how much it cost? Apparently, the terraced property in County Durham sold for just £17,250, which sounds practically unheard of by today’s standards.
On the flip side, in the very same month, the most expensive property sold in London for a whopping £28,500,000! Unsurprisingly enough, it was the sale of a residential detached property in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea that was able to gain the title of the most expensive property ever sold in the UK.
These figures certainly provide food for thought!
How to ensure you get the cheapest possible price on a UK house
If you are considering moving or buying property for the sake of cutting back on costs, you don’t always have to strictly dedicate your time to finding the cheapest places to buy a house in UK. There are a few things that you can do to ensure that you pay the cheapest possible price. Having a plan and understanding of the entire the process before you get involved in any negotiations will ensure a better outcome for you. Below are a few tips that could help you to get a cheaper price on that house that recently caught your eye:
- Get a “mortgage in principle” before you start house hunting. This is provided when a buyer applies for a mortgage to see how much the bank will be willing to provide. You can use this principle mortgage certificate as part of your bargaining as buyers and agents will take your offer more seriously (the sale usually goes through a bit quicker if you are already pre-approved for credit).
- Investigate as to how long the property has been on sale for. The longer a house has been advertised and the seller has had to wait, the more open they will be to negotiations with the price.
- Do a thorough inspection of the home and list defects and flaws that will require attention (and money). You can use these flaws to negotiate a lower price as most owners won’t want to fork out a lot of money for further repairs. Good things to look into are when the boiler was last serviced, the condition of the roof, age and servicing of the heating system, the age and effectiveness of the double glazing, damp problems, the foundations and similar.
- Look for properties put on sale by the owner and not through an agent. Often, the cost of a house increases due to the expected commission that the owner must pay to the estate agent for selling the property. If you choose to deal with private sellers, you could very well benefit from lower prices.
One of the biggest tips that first time house buyers in the UK can benefit from is to shop around. You can find cheap places to live and buy a house in the UK if you don’t rush whole the process. Put together an affordability budget, do your research and be wise about negotiating. Soon you will have the home of your dreams, and you won’t have to break the bank!