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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 June, 2004, 11:33 GMT 12:33 UK
South West housing 'unaffordable'
For sale signs
Housing in the South West is now 7.22 times the average income
The South West of England has become the most unaffordable part of the UK to buy a house, according to a new survey.

The National Housing Federation says average house prices in the region are 169,364, more than seven times the average 23,471 salary for the area.

In the South East, house prices are only 6.22 times the average salary.

The federation report, which analysed Land Registry figures, said since 2000 south-west house prices have risen by 87.5%.

The report adds that in 10 of the 44 council areas included in the survey, prices more than doubled in the past four years.

'Priced out of market'

Bernadette Stokoe from the National Housing Federation said: "The problem in the South West is low incomes relative to prices.

"Affordable housing supply is simply not keeping up with demand, as more and more people are priced out of the market."

The areas surveyed reach from Tewkesbury in north Gloucestershire to Cornwall in the far South West.

House prices in the Cotswolds, East and North Dorset, the Forest of Dean, Kennet, North Wiltshire and Restormel in Cornwall saw the biggest rises.

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