Winners and losers of low wage home affordability

Wiganers being paid the national living wage would have to work upwards of 45 hours a week to buy a house in the majority of the borough's townships.
Wigan homesWigan homes
Wigan homes

A new online tool has revealed that, out of 2,643 postcodes in the UK, there are just 165 where a person could afford to live working on average 37 hours a week on the current living wage as set by the Government.

None of these postcodes is in Wigan borough.

The system, invented by home interiors specialist “Hillarys”, has revealed that the average worker on living wage in the borough would have to work at least 42 hours a week in order to afford a mortgage.

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A search on the Hillarys “hours to buy” tool has revealed that WN2 and WN7 are the cheapest areas to buy in the borough.

The WN2 postcode covers Hindley, Abram, Hindley Green, Haigh, Platt Bridge, Aspull, Bickershaw and some parts of Ince while WN7 covers most parts of Leigh.

Comparatively, living-wage workers wanting to live in Golborne and Lowton (WA3) would have to work at least 64 hours to afford a home.

This equates to around 3,342 hours out of 8,760 hours in the year.

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Despite this, Wigan still remains one of the cheaper areas to live in the UK - being listed 580th out of 2,650 locations for expensive mortgages.

Tara Hall, spokesperson for Hillarys, said: “It’s interesting to see how big the gap is between the most and least expensive places to buy


“However, these figures are based on the National Living Wage so some people with higher earnings might get different results.”

Workers wanting to live in other postcode areas including WN3 (Ince), WN4 (Ashton) and WN5 (Orrell, Billinge and Up Holland) would have to work 46, 47 and 48 hours respectively to get on the property ladder.

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The most expensive areas with a WN postcode were WN1 (Scholes, Whelley, Swinley and the town centre) and WN6 (Standish, Shevington, Parbold, Wrightington and Appley Bridge) where the lowest paid workers would have to work at least 52 and 57 hours respectively to afford an average home.

Hillarys’ tool has also revealed the top 10 most affordable locations to live in the UK with TS2 in Middlesborough coming in at the cheapest where homeowners would only need to work 10 hours a week on the living wage.

On the opposite end of the scale, workers wanting to buy a home in SW7 near the Natural History Museum in London, would have to work a whopping 686 hours a week.