Lenders in the UK offered some of their cheapest-ever mortgages in 2011, new research has revealed.
Carried out by Barclays, the study showed these deals meant monthly home loan payments last year were the most affordable they have been for ten years.
According to the investigation, people used 15.4 per cent of their take-home wage in order to cover these costs - markedly less than the 20.5 per cent recorded in 2008.
In September, the typical payment stood at 15.2 per cent, or �488 a month, which was the lowest it has amounted to since records began ten years ago.
Andy Gray, head of mortgages at Barclays - which has more than 300 years of history and operates in over 50 countries - said it is important homeowners act early in 2012 to make sure they are able to secure the mortgage deals that work best for them.
The industry figure stated: "Other financial factors are likely to bite again this year, but homeowners can't afford to forget about their mortgage just because base rate is predicted to remain at record lows."