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The UK's most expensive cities for first-time buyers

Over the past year, homeowners and first-time buyers have faced soaring mortgage costs. 

Last year, the fallout from the mini-Budget caused rates to soar before falling – and then rising once more as the Bank of England has consistently hiked the base rate.

Sadly, mortgage rates will likely rise further as more interest rate hikes are expected this year.

First-time buyers with a 15% deposit typically pay nearly £200 more per month compared to last year due to higher mortgage rates and record asking prices, according to data from Rightmove.

While there are some cities that are relatively cheap to buy property in, some cities are significantly more expensive.

Rightmove has analysed the monthly mortgage payment of a typical first-time buyer property with at least two bedrooms and the equivalent rent in cities in Great Britain to discover the most expensive places.

This data assumes that the buyer takes out a five-year fixed-rate loan with a 10% deposit at a rate of 4.45% spread over 25 years.

While mortgage rates have risen since this data was published in May, it can provide insight into the most expensive cities to buy a property in for the first time.

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Which cities are the most expensive?

It should come as little surprise that London is the most expensive city for first-time buyers, where the average asking price is £508,879 with an average mortgage payment of £2,533 per month.

On average, you’ll pay £479 more a month on mortgage payments compared to renting.

In second place is St. Albans, where the average asking price is £393,485, with average monthly mortgage payments of £1,958. You’ll typically pay £525 more a month with a mortgage compared to renting.

The below table reveals the five most expensive cities and the average monthly mortgage and rental payments for first-time buyers.


Average asking price

Average monthly mortgage payment

Average monthly rental payment





St. Albans
















If you’re thinking of buying a property, it’s a good idea to get in touch with a financial adviser via Unbiased who may be able to find exclusive deals in a turbulent market.

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We’ll find a professional perfectly matched to your needs. Getting started is easy, fast and free.

About the author
Lisa-Marie Voneshen is a Senior Content Writer at Unbiased. She is an award-winning journalist with nearly a decade of experience writing and editing content across various areas, including personal finance and investing.