Unaffordable Country

Josh Greenstein

Feature by TheGuardian.com, measuring housing affordability in the UK.

The feature ‘Unaffordable Country’ by the Guardian, is an interactive visualisation of

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(TheGuardian.com, 2014) The red on the map denotes an areas median house price being at least 10x the annual salary inserted

housing prices in the UK. The user puts in their yearly income in the menu bar on the side, and the map automatically generates a visualisation showing where the user can/cannot afford to buy a house. The feature looks at the median house prices for the given area and generates a ‘heat map’ which calculates the relationship between the median house price in that area and your salary. The more red the map, the more unaffordable the area. Some alarming statistics jump out when looking at this interactive feature. For example, a person earning the national average income of £26,500 would be unable to afford a home in 91% of England and Wales. In Central London, the median house price in 2014 was around £1.6 million, which is 64 times the average salary.


The map was created by Helena Bengtsson, and uses real data from housing in the UK to demonstrate their issue of housing affordability. It’s interesting to note just how b
ad this has gotten in Central London particularly, and how black and white the statistics make this issue seem. 

Available at http://www.theguardian.com/society/ng-interactive/2015/sep/02/unaffordable-country-where-can-you-afford-to-buy-a-house