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London becomes a "no grad zone"

September 2023 - Average room rents in London & surrounds are at a record high, reaching a staggering £1,013 in August 2023. Data reveals that London is now entirely unaffordable to graduates, thanks to sky-high rents.

Cost-of-living crisis raises London's affordability standards

According to SpareRoom's latest Quarterly Rental Index, not one postcode in the Capital has average room rents that are "affordable" on the average London graduate salary of £29,000 (equating to a monthly take-home of £1,932 after tax). This is based on traditional affordability standards, which state rent shouldn't cost more than 30% of your income.

Rocketing rents and an ongoing cost-of-living crisis have now rendered this 30% benchmark unrealistic, with the majority of Londoners spending in excess of 30% of their salary on rent.

Where can graduates afford to live?

The most affordable postcodes in the Capital are E12 (Manor Park) at £714, SE28 (Thamesmead) at £741 and E7 (Forest Gate) at £753, where young professionals can expect to spend 37%, 38% and 39% of their salary on rent respectively.

SpareRoom has compiled a list of the more affordable major UK cities, based on the average graduate salary in each city vs average room rent in the city:

  1. Liverpool (£503) = 29% of average graduate salary (£25,000)
  2. Sheffield (£504) = 29% of average graduate salary (£25,000)
  3. Belfast (£539) = 20% of average graduate salary (£42,000)
  4. Glasgow (£643) = 30% of average graduate salary (£32,500)
  5. Birmingham (£516) = 28% of average graduate salary (£27,000)
  6. Leicester (£530) = 30% of average graduate salary (£25,000)
  7. Newcastle upon Tyne (£545) = 31% of average graduate salary (£25,000)
  8. Leeds (£567) = 32% of average graduate salary (£25,000)