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Graham Awards


Revealed - how the rental market puts women at a disadvantage

New research has thrown light for the first time on the gap between the rental affordability of male and female workers in the UK.

The study, by ideal flatmate, looked at the current net monthly wage in each region of the UK for those that live there and what percentage of salary was required to rent in the local market.

It also assessed how much of the UK fell into each affordability bracket for both men and women. 


The data shows that across the UK, the average male is required to spend 28.6 per cent of their salary on rent, while this climbs to 42.6 per cent for the average female.

This gap is at its largest in England with men spending 35.5 per cent of their salary on rent while women fork out 53.4 per cent.

The smallest gap is in Wales, with women spending 35.3 per cent while men spend 25.4 per cent.

Across the UK, the higher cost of the average male wage means that in 42 per cent of areas they are spending 30 per cent or less of their salary on rent.

In contrast, the average female could afford to pay rent at 30 per cent or less of their salary in just 0.3 per cent of UK areas. 

Based on the average wage for those living there, East Renfrewshire is the most affordable spot for men with just 17.1 per cent of salary spent on rent each month.  

The Rhondda is the most affordable rental market for women, however, it would require them to pay 29.7 per cent of their salary on rent.  

In London, male renters in Bexley have it best, paying 39 per cent of their salary on rent, while Greenwich is the most affordable for female renters but still requires 58.5 per cent of their salary to rent.

“This isn’t simply a case of equal pay but equal opportunity across the board and there is a real lack of this when it comes to rental affordability in particular. Tackling the UK rental market is tough enough as it is without the immediate set back of a 14 per cent reduction in your rental potential due to a lower wage” says ideal flatmate co-founder Tom Gatzen.


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