Here at Debbie Fortune estate agents, we have been fascinated by the changes to our housing market over the past 70 years of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, so we thought we’d share some interesting facts with you. 
1950- If you could afford to buy a home after the war, it was likely to be a brand new one. The average cost of a new house was £1,891 (around £65,224 in today’s money) and the average salary was £10 a week (roughly £339), so buying a property was no mean feat, even then. On the upside, these new homes came with indoor toilets, revolutionising the way we did our business! The electric fire, washing machine and humble fish finger were life-changing inventions of the era. In the 1950s, a loaf of bread cost 4p, a pound of butter was 18p, a pint of milk was 3p. 
1960- House prices continued to rise along with the average income, which now stood at £960 (around £21,925) per year. The average cost of a home was now £2,530 (approximately £55,784). By the end of the decade some of us were watching TV – in colour. Most homes in the UK now had electricity, a fridge, cooker and TV, a loaf of bread, which could finally be bought ready sliced, was the equivalent of 5p. 
1970- This was a rocky decade with widespread unrest and hardship on the one hand, and a boom in home ownership on the other. The mortgage market took off and house prices flew. At the start of the 70s the average house price was £4,057. In 1974, the first microwave was sold and four years later the VHS video recorder meant we never had to miss our favourite TV programme again. Our average earnings climbed too. But this was when the gap between wages and house prices began growing wider and wider. The cost of home ownership continued to rise at lightning speed. By the end of the decade, the average house price had quadrupled to £19,925. Avocado became the must-have colour for bathroom suites. A loaf of bread cost 9p and the average weekly wage was around £32. 
1980- Everything changed again. Margaret Thatcher gave people the right to buy their council houses. And house prices shot up like never before, reaching an average price of £20,268. The world waited to see who shot JR in the TV series Dallas. And ‘Ghetto Blaster’ made it into the English dictionary. House prices rose 16% in 1987 and a further 25% in 1988 – the highest rise ever recorded. You could expect to pay, on average, £29,143 for a home. While Britons got by on an average wage of £6,000 (the equivalent of about £19,000 today), a loaf of bread cost 33p and a pint of milk 17p. 
1990- Spiralling interest rates led to the housing crash at the start of this decade. Even though property prices dropped by 20%, the average cost of a home was still £58,153 – twice as much as just five years earlier. And a pint of milk cost 30p, a loaf of bread 75p. Slowly but surely, house prices started to creep up again. You could now expect to pay, on average, £59,939 for your new pad. In 1997, house prices were on average 3.6 times workers’ annual salaries. 
2000- New millennium, new increase in house prices. And at almost £30,000 in five years, it was quite a big one. The average cost of a home reached £89,597. In just five years, house prices leapt nearly £70,000. This meant the average property cost a staggering £156,236. While the average salary was around £23,900. By the end of the decade prices were still on the up, but not such a huge jump, the average cost of a property reached £170,365. 
2015- In 15 years, average property prices increased by over £100,000, meaning you’d need around £197,890 to buy a house. While the average salary had only crept up to £27,600. By 2019 Sources show that the average cost of a home was £231,215 – that’s £229,324 more than in 1950. Quite a rise, wouldn’t you agree? 
2022- If you’d like to know how much your home is worth now, please do give our friendly team a call at any of our three offices. 
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