THE price difference between renting a home and paying a mortgage in York is greater than anywhere else in country, a new survey claims.

The figures, released by property search website Zoopla, put York ahead of other towns and cities where it has now become cheaper to pay an interest-only mortgage than struggle with high rents.

The results have led to calls for more cheaper homes to be built in the city.

According to Zoopla, the average rent in York is £1,083 per month, while the average asking price for a home is £147,624.

Based on an interest rate of five per cent, Zoopla claims the mortgage repayments would be 76 per cent cheaper each month than renting.

A spokesman for the York-based Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust (JRHT) said: “This report shows how we badly need an increase in housing supply to improve affordability for aspiring home owners in York.

“With people forced into private renting at sky-high rates, it’s increasingly difficult for young people to get on the housing ladder, seeing their wages eaten up by the rent.

“At the same time the waiting lists for social housing show no sign of easing and there is a huge shortfall in the building of new homes that are desperately needed.

“JRHT is doing its bit to help meet that demand by building new family homes in the city, but much more needs to be done.

“It’s vital we meet demand today and provide housing across a range of tenures, at rates people can afford.”

Press reader John Keven, 31, who rents a house in the Acomb area with his partner, said: “Our monthly rent would certainly cover a mortgage repayment.

“It’s ironic because you can’t get a mortgage because the banks are worried you won’t be able to make the repayments”

Coun Tracey Simpson-Laing, City of York Council’s cabinet member for housing, said the average household income of people in the private rented sector in York was £20,000, which meant many struggled to get on the property ladder.

She said: “The council recognises difficulties that many residents are experiencing and we are working with partners including housing associations and the Homes and Communities Agency.”