Homes became more affordable in Powys last year, thanks to an increase in average earnings, figures reveal.

Each year, the Office for National Statistics calculates housing affordability by comparing the median house price in a local authority area to the median full-time annual income of people who live there.

The higher the ratio is, the less affordable homes are to buy.

In Powys, the average house price was £180,000 and the average annual salary £28,666 in 2020.

That meant prospective buyers would need 6.3 times their annual salary to buy a home.

That figure was down from 6.7 a year earlier, as the median wage grew by 6.4% while the cost of a property stayed the same, making homes more affordable on average.

Affordability ratios varied across Wales last year – in the Vale of Glamorgan, house hunters spent 7.9 times their annual earnings on a property on average, while in Blaenau Gwent, the ratio was just 3.6.

The ONS said affordability across England and Wales had not changed significantly from the year before, but added that it has worsened overall since 1997.

Back then, the gap between ratios in the most and least affordable areas was just 9.9. By 2020, that had risen more than triple to 33.8.

Polly Neate, chief executive of housing charity Shelter, said homeownership is out of reach for many people, especially those on lower and insecure incomes.

"We haven’t built enough good quality or affordable homes for decades, meaning house prices have sky-rocketed," she said.

"With no way of buying and a chronic shortage of social homes, millions have become trapped in expensive private rentals."

Ms Neate said more "genuinely affordable" homes are needed nationally.

House prices have soared in Powys since 2002 – the earliest point at which local data is available.

The median cost of a property then was £79,999, with last year's figure more than double that. Over the same period, the median annual salary increased by £11,145, a 64% rise.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said more than 243,000 homes were delivered last year – the highest number in over 30 years.