When news happens, text SDE and your photos or videos to 80360. Or contact us by email and phone.
Winchester is one of most expensive cities in country
9:52am Saturday 23rd March 2013 in News
WITH its history, beautiful surrounding countryside and direct rail link to London, the Hampshire city of Winchester would be high on most people’s list of the best places to live in the country.
But those assets come at a cost.
A new survey of house prices has shown that Winchester is one of the top five most expensive cities in the UK.
The price of the typical home there is more than eight times the average income – placing it well above London in the list.
All ten of the least affordable cities are in the south: Salisbury, Bath and Truro all placed above Winchester, with Oxford topping the list.
But prices in the city reflect a nationwide trend, as the report from Lloyds TSB shows house prices in urban areas rose by 1.7 per cent last year.
George Burnand, of Winchester-based estate agents Strutt & Parker, said house-buyers were attracted by Winchester’s links with London and easy access to the countryside.
“Winchester is almost the gatepost of proper countryside in the south.
“And people like being able to get into London and it has fantastic schools.
“The £400,000 to £800,000 price range traded very well last year and probably increased more than 1.7 per cent,” he said.
Living in a city is generally a more expensive option when buying a home, with house prices around 5.4
times the average earnings across the country.
But prices are more of a stretch than they were a decade ago, when they were about 5.3 times the average wage.
Northern Ireland, Scotland and the north of England were home to the most affordable cities to live in, including Lisburn, Belfast, Stirling, Glasgow, Salford and Bradford.
The findings come in the wake of the Government’s new multibillion- pound scheme in the Budget to help more people get on the property ladder, or move up it with a five per cent deposit.
What do you think?
Simon Harmer, 39, above, company director, of Winchester, said: “I do think it’s worth it.
I’ve lived here for 12 years and I was a home owner here.
But I do think it’s very, very expensive.
I think it’s just the beauty of it.”
Simon Hornby, 19, barman, above, of South Wonston, said: “I think the prices are ridiculous. There is nowhere to move to here. I’ll probably look to move to a cheaper part of the country. Arguably it’s worth it.”
Edna Smart, 87, a pensioner, above, from Kings Worthy, said: “Winchester is expensive but worth it. We have got a house in the area but it’s worth more now than when we bought it. It’s a good place to have a home.”
Pamela Page, 78, above, retired, of Alresford, said: “I don’t think my son could afford to live here. I like Winchester very much and I always do my Christmas shopping here but I know all the shops and where to go.”
Mark Oram, 21, above, a hospital worker, of South Wonston, said: “Maybe later I would buy a house here. I would move sooner if it was cheaper. Even the flats here are really expensive. For young people there’s not much going on.”
Lynne Harris, 51, above, admin assistant, of Kings Worthy, said: “It’s expensive, definitely. My daughter is 30 and she’s been at home.
She’s got a quite well-paid job but she couldn’t afford to move out.”