The cost of buying the average home in England has gone up more than four times faster than the average wage over the last decade, according to the TUC.
House prices have risen by 180% over 10 years, taking the average house price to £168,000, while the average wage has gone up by only 43%, to just over £24,000.
It now takes nearly seven times an average employee’s wage to buy an average house, the TUC said.
In 1997, the average house could be bought for £60,000 – equivalent to three-and-a-half times the then average wage of £17,000.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “Housing is by far and away the biggest cost for most people at work. These stark figures bring alive the housing crisis. They show just how quickly buying your own home has gone out of the reach of many working people. It is striking that house prices seem to have gone up in line with the pay of top directors and the super-rich, rather than middle and low earners.”
The London boroughs with the most expensive housing dominate the list of the top 10 local authority areas with the biggest current gap between the pay of local employees and local house prices, but Dorset and Rutland also feature.
In Kensington and Chelsea, it now takes more than 20 times the local average salary of £26,000 to buy the average house, which now costs more than £500,000.