Mortgage payments now more affordable
Mortgage payments for new borrowers have reached their most affordable levels for 14 years, with typical payments in Northern Ireland well below the UK average at just over a fifth of disposable income, research from Halifax has found.
Scotland was the only UK region with cheaper average mortgage payments for new borrowers, at 20%. Some smaller areas within Scotland and northern England cost less than a fifth of disposable incomes.
Average mortgage payments for new borrowers, including first-time buyers and home movers, stood at 27% of disposable earnings in the fourth quarter of 2011.
This marks the lowest proportion since spring 1997 when a 26% proportion was recorded, and stands well below the 37% average over the past 27 years.
The study named Kensington and Chelsea as the least affordable local authority district, with mortgage payments taking up 78% of disposable local earnings.