The cheapest country to buy a property around the world

How long would it take to buy a home across the globe on an average UK salary?

With mortgage products being taken off the shelves in the UK, buying a flat or house is becoming increasingly difficult. But have you ever wondered if you could afford a property abroad? We looked into the average cost of a city-centre 2-bed apartment in 106 countries, and compared this to the average UK salary to see how long it would take for Brits to afford a deposit in cities around the world.

On average, UK workers earn £2,239 a month after taxes, whereas the average London apartment costs £778,000. If 15% of the monthly salary is saved (£335.90), it would take 29 years to afford the 15% deposit (£116,717).

The country where it would take the longest to afford the deposit for an apartment is Hong Kong (too small to be seen on the map). It would take 66 years to afford the £264,713 deposit for a Hong Kong flat on an average UK salary.

The 5 countries where it would take Brits the longest to purchase a flat

1. Hong Kong: 65 years and 8 months
2. South Korea: 42 years and 5 months
3. Singapore: 38 years and 2 months
4. China: 36 years and 6 months
5. United Kingdom: 29 years

The 5 countries it would take the shortest amount of time to afford a flat

1. Pakistan: 1 year and 2 months
2. Egypt: 1 year and 4 months
3. Mauritius: 1 year and 5 months
4. Turkey: 1 year and 6 months
5. Venezuela: 1 year and 8 months

On the other end of the spectrum, the place that requires the shortest period of saving to afford the deposit for a property is Pakistan, where the deposit for a flat of the same size would cost you a modest £4,645, which would take just over 1 year (1.15) for the average UK worker to save. This is 8.5 years quicker than the global average (10.5 years).

How long it would take to save for a flat deposit around the world

How do property prices in Europe compare?

The average time it would take to save for the deposit for a flat in Europe is 10 years, but this time varies significantly depending on where in Europe you’re looking. The United Kingdom is the most expensive country in Europe for a capital city flat, where it would take 29 years to afford the deposit. Luxembourg is second to the UK, where it would take 25 years to afford the deposit, followed by Switzerland (24 years), France (24 years) and Sweden (21 years).

On average, it would take residents of the United Kingdom 19 years longer to afford a deposit on a city-centre flat compared to the European average.

The European countries where you could afford the deposit the quickest are Kazakhstan (2 years), Moldova (2 years), Kosovo (2 years), North Macedonia (3 years) and Montenegro (3 years).

Country Average cost of a flat Down payment amount Number of years to afford the down payment
United Kingdom £778,000 £116,717 28.96
Luxembourg £663,000 £99,497 24.68
Switzerland £656,000 £98,352 24.40
France £642,000 £96,271 23.88
Sweden £561,000 £84,213 20.89
Austria £485,000 £72,755 18.05
Netherlands £484,000 £72,546 18.00
Norway £484,000 £72,532 17.99
Finland £454,000 £68,112 16.90
Malta £441,000 £66,115 16.40
Russia £434,000 £65,051 16.14
Germany £428,000 £64,146 15.91
Denmark £392,000 £58,774 14.58
Ireland £387,000 £58,068 14.41
Czech Republic £385,000 £57,788 14.34
Italy £356,000 £53,333 13.23
Iceland £333,000 £49,879 12.37
Portugal £282,000 £42,246 10.48
Spain £273,000 £41,015 10.18
Slovakia £250,000 £37,534 9.31
Slovenia £229,000 £34,380 8.53
Poland £219,000 £32,885 8.16
Belgium £207,000 £31,069 7.71
Estonia £205,000 £30,768 7.63
Lithuania £201,000 £30,076 7.46
Croatia £187,000 £28,010 6.95
Hungary £166,000 £24,950 6.19
Serbia £163,000 £24,471 6.07
Armenia £130,000 £19,436 4.82
Greece £129,000 £19,325 4.79
Latvia £127,000 £19,050 4.73
Bulgaria £126,000 £18,903 4.69
Romania £123,000 £18,435 4.57
Albania £112,000 £16,780 4.16
Cyprus £111,000 £16,699 4.14
Belarus £107,000 £16,039 3.98
Ukraine £106,000 £15,848 3.93
Bosnia And Herzegovina £105,000 £15,786 3.92
Azerbaijan £86,000 £12,897 3.20
Montenegro £85,000 £12,723 3.16
North Macedonia £84,000 £12,548 3.11
Kosovo (Disputed Territory) £80,000 £12,013 2.98
Moldova £61,000 £9,137 2.27
Kazakhstan £53,000 £8,005 1.99

The full list of countries

Country Average cost of a flat Down payment amount Number of years to afford the down payment
Hong Kong £1,765,000 £264,713 65.67
South Korea £1,140,000 £170,961 42.41
Singapore £1,026,000 £153,897 38.18
China £955,000 £143,228 35.53
United Kingdom £778,000 £116,717 28.96
Taiwan £771,000 £115,700 28.70
United States £722,000 £108,254 26.86
Nigeria £686,000 £102,885 25.52
Luxembourg £663,000 £99,497 24.68
Switzerland £656,000 £98,352 24.40
Palestine £654,000 £98,109 24.34
Israel £645,000 £96,768 24.01
France £642,000 £96,271 23.88
Sweden £561,000 £84,213 20.89
Austria £485,000 £72,755 18.05
Netherlands £484,000 £72,546 18.00
Norway £484,000 £72,532 17.99
Japan £476,000 £71,368 17.71
Finland £454,000 £68,112 16.90
Malta £441,000 £66,115 16.40
Russia £434,000 £65,051 16.14
Germany £428,000 £64,146 15.91
Denmark £392,000 £58,774 14.58
Ireland £387,000 £58,068 14.41
Czech Republic £385,000 £57,788 14.34
Italy £356,000 £53,333 13.23
Iceland £333,000 £49,879 12.37
Kuwait £318,000 £47,691 11.83
Portugal £282,000 £42,246 10.48
New Zealand £280,000 £41,926 10.40
Spain £273,000 £41,015 10.18
Qatar £272,000 £40,801 10.12
Thailand £268,000 £40,238 9.98
Canada £256,000 £38,399 9.53
Slovakia £250,000 £37,534 9.31
Slovenia £229,000 £34,380 8.53
Australia £226,000 £33,914 8.41
Poland £219,000 £32,885 8.16
Belgium £207,000 £31,069 7.71
Estonia £205,000 £30,768 7.63
Lithuania £201,000 £30,076 7.46
Lebanon £196,000 £29,330 7.28
Puerto Rico £190,000 £28,571 7.09
Philippines £189,000 £28,304 7.02
Croatia £187,000 £28,010 6.95
United Arab Emirates £180,000 £26,932 6.68
Hungary £166,000 £24,950 6.19
Serbia £163,000 £24,471 6.07
Indonesia £154,000 £23,144 5.74
Uruguay £150,000 £22,540 5.59
India £150,000 £22,452 5.57
Argentina £144,000 £21,622 5.36
Mexico £144,000 £21,526 5.34
Vietnam £131,000 £19,722 4.89
Armenia £130,000 £19,436 4.82
Greece £129,000 £19,325 4.79
Latvia £127,000 £19,050 4.73
Iran £126,000 £18,926 4.70
Bulgaria £126,000 £18,903 4.69
Panama £123,000 £18,513 4.59
Trinidad And Tobago £123,000 £18,481 4.58
Romania £123,000 £18,435 4.57
Iraq £121,000 £18,080 4.49
Malaysia £120,000 £17,978 4.46
Morocco £118,000 £17,727 4.40
Chile £115,000 £17,308 4.29
Brazil £113,000 £16,905 4.19
Albania £112,000 £16,780 4.16
Cyprus £111,000 £16,699 4.14
Oman £108,000 £16,181 4.01
Belarus £107,000 £16,039 3.98
Ukraine £106,000 £15,848 3.93
Costa Rica £105,000 £15,796 3.92
Bosnia And Herzegovina £105,000 £15,786 3.92
South Africa £105,000 £15,703 3.90
Peru £103,000 £15,392 3.82
Jamaica £101,000 £15,161 3.76
Nepal £97,000 £14,500 3.60
Sri Lanka £95,000 £14,304 3.55
Saudi Arabia £94,000 £14,026 3.48
Algeria £89,000 £13,393 3.32
Guatemala £87,000 £13,027 3.23
Azerbaijan £86,000 £12,897 3.20
Bahrain £86,000 £12,865 3.19
Montenegro £85,000 £12,723 3.16
Colombia £84,000 £12,608 3.13
North Macedonia £84,000 £12,548 3.11
Dominican Republic £82,000 £12,315 3.06
Kosovo (Disputed Territory) £80,000 £12,013 2.98
Kenya £79,000 £11,847 2.94
Ghana £75,000 £11,201 2.78
Jordan £72,000 £10,797 2.68
Ecuador £71,000 £10,699 2.65
Bolivia £71,000 £10,638 2.64
Uzbekistan £67,000 £10,110 2.51
El Salvador £66,000 £9,922 2.46
Honduras £65,000 £9,700 2.41
Bangladesh £63,000 £9,397 2.33
Moldova £61,000 £9,137 2.27
Kazakhstan £53,000 £8,005 1.99
Tunisia £47,000 £7,095 1.76
Venezuela £45,000 £6,820 1.69
Turkey £41,000 £6,111 1.52
Mauritius £39,000 £5,841 1.45
Egypt £37,000 £5,520 1.37
Pakistan £31,000 £4,645 1.15

The top 10 countries it would take the longest to afford a deposit

Country Average cost of a flat Down payment amount Number of years to afford the down payment
Hong Kong £1,765,000 £264,713 65.67
South Korea £1,140,000 £170,961 42.41
Singapore £1,026,000 £153,897 38.18
China £955,000 £143,228 35.53
United Kingdom £778,000 £116,717 28.96
Taiwan £771,000 £115,700 28.70
United States £722,000 £108,254 26.86
Nigeria £686,000 £102,885 25.52
Luxembourg £663,000 £99,497 24.68
Switzerland £656,000 £98,352 24.40

Sources

  • Numbeo
  • The median size of a 2-bed flat in the UK, according to a 2010 dwelling size survey, is 59.11 square metres. Therefore, each price per square metre was multiplied by 59.11 to get the cost of a 2-bed flat in each country.

For all media enquiries, please contact

Matt Mckenna
UK Communications Manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806
matt.mckenna@finder.com@MichHutchison/in/matthewmckenna2

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