Fri 17 Aug 2018 View all news articles

First-time buyers dominate market

The proportion of first-time buyers has reached its highest level in a decade and now represents more than half of the market, the latest data has revealed.

According to new statistics released by Halifax, the average first-time buyer is aged 31 and they are paying out £209,000 to get onto the property ladder.

What’s more, they are also putting down record deposits to secure their first home. The Halifax First-Time Buyer Review discovered the national average first-time buyer deposit is currently £33,127 – a rise of 71% on the £19,364 stumped up in 2008.

Indeed, across Britain, the average price of first-time properties has outperformed the overall housing market, said Halifax.

Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax, said: “First-time buyers are having to dig deeper than ever to get onto the property ladder. With the average price now over £200,000 and deposits at £33,000 it’s not surprising that the average age of the first-time buyer has crept up to 31.

“Despite these increases, and the concern many young people feel about home ownership, the number of first-time buyers continues to grow and is nearly back to the peak seen of 2006.

“Government measures, such as Help to Buy, and record low mortgage rates continue to make buying more financially attractive than renting, with savings of £900 a year.”

Help to Buy

Indeed, Halifax’s figures reveal first-time buyers now make up 51% of the market compared to 38% in 2008. In just the first six months of 2018 numbers went up by 3%.

Halifax said the share had picked up since the introduction of the Government’s Help to Buy scheme in 2013 which has helped 128,317 first-time buyers onto the housing ladder over this period.

Regionally, there were also differences – particularly when it came to London. The average first-time buyer in the UK is 31 but in London it is a slightly higher 33.

First-time buyer properties in London, meanwhile, have soared by 48% in the last ten years to £419,608 which is more than double the national average. In the South-East it rose 37% to £275,632 and in East Anglia it went up 30% to £210,639.

In the North of England and Wales prices for first-time buyer properties went up by 8% and 9% respectively and in Northern Ireland the average price is a third lower than in 2008, and is now at £124,035 – the lowest in the UK.

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Source: What Mortgage

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