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First-time buyers constitute over a quarter of housing market in 2023

  • 02/01/2024
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First-time buyers constitute over a quarter of housing market in 2023
First-time buyers accounted for around 28 per cent of the housing market in 2023, according to data from a building society.

Internal data from Skipton Group, which includes Skipton Building Society and Hampton Estate Agents, reveals that this is an increase from 16 per cent in 2015 and shows that first-time buyers are resilient despite the challenging economic conditions.

A poll commissioned by the group that surveyed around 1,000 people planning to buy their first home in the next three years showed that 70 per cent would be willing to compromise to own their own home.

Within those willing to compromise 42 per cent were happy with a smaller garden, 37 per cent would be open to living further away from their initial area of choice and 67 per cent would look at a smaller property.

Almost half of potential first-time buyers surveyed said they would consider overbidding to ensue they have a better chance of securing their preferred home.

Over a third expect to own a semi-detached home, a quarter expect to buy a flat and 21 per cent are looking at terraced houses.

The report noted that there were more first-time buyers in London and the South compared to last year, but fewer in the North and Yorkshire over the same period.

There were 28 local authorities where first-time buyers outnumber movers, most of them being in the South.

In London, 46 per cent of first-time buyers rely on receiving money for a deposit from parents or guardians, which is up from a national average of 35 per cent.


First-time buyers ‘more realistic than optimistic’

Aneisha Beveridge, head of research at Hamptons, said: “First-time buyers who have been able to successfully navigate 2023’s higher interest rates have increasingly found themselves at the front of the home-hunting queue.

“With nothing to sell in what’s been a tough market, those buying their first home are being favoured over offers from anyone with somewhere to sell, often even when their offer is a little lower.”

She added: “This means they’re getting more home for their money than they were last year, particularly if they’ve got a healthy deposit. New buyers have been driven into the market by rapidly rising rents which are making the increases in mortgage rates look more palatable.

“However, with mortgage rates forecast to continue falling, movers will probably return in more meaningful numbers in 2024.”

Charlotte Harrison, CEO of Home Financing at Skipton Building Society, said: “We’ve seen many first-time buyers become more realistic than optimistic with what they can afford and adjust their property expectations.

“Aspiring homeowners in 2024 are encouraged to explore a range of options available to them, as the first step onto the property ladder may be closer than they think.”

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