First-timers Fly Further

Added on August 1st 2017

Recent Post Office research has found that first-time property buyers are prepared to move further afield than their predecessors to get on that first rung of the ladder. Around 70% of first-timers compromised on a property that was an average of 26 minutes from their ideal location.

Only 16% were able to buy in their first-choice area, but some had to make serious compromises, like going without a garden (5%) or without a parking space (3%). We’re not a nation of young doer-uppers, though, as only 4% were brave enough to buy a place that needed at lot of renovation.

Why is this happening?

People have to venture further out because while house prices have grown by 48% since 2005, incomes have grown by only 35%. This makes buying the first property a real challenge for many younger house-hunters.

Thankfully, most are undaunted and the number of first-time buyers has actually increased – they just have to be flexible and brave.

The UK is still affordable (mostly)

The Post Office research discovered that most of the UK’s property sales are in areas that are affordable to most first-timers, as long as they think outside the box and look for hidden gems or up-and-coming areas. Or if they decide they don’t need a garden…

Places that are to get major infrastructure or transport improvements are still affordable for the time being, and anyone making an investment in one of these areas should see it pay off.

Not discouraged at all

The continuing enthusiasm for homeowning is reassuring, and is also driven by a few factors. For almost a quarter, the desire to settle down with a partner was paramount, while for others it was long-term security after years of renting.

Another quarter of respondents said they’d had enough of paying rent to someone else, while 18% made the effort to buy as they see property as the most stable long-term investment.

Youthful optimism

Almost half (44%) of the respondents found the house-buying process exciting, while 24% found it stressful.  The main points of stress were the uncertainty once the process had started, unexpected costs and having to borrow extra money from friends and family.

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