First-time buyer sales at a two-year high – but at a cost

Posted: 12/6/2016

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First-time buyer sales soared to a two-year high in April, but they are paying more to get on the property ladder, according to property industry statistics.

First Time Buyer trackers for April recorded an improvement of 14.9% and the highest monthly number of completed FTB transactions in almost two years.

However, first-time buyers are now paying on average £20,000 more to get on the housing ladder compared to a year ago. Meanwhile they are saving on average £3,300 more for a deposit – equivalent to an extra month’s salary.

Affordability is most tough, unsurprisingly, in London with average prices at £422,613 taking typical deposits to £72,054.

Properties in the south-east are £200,000 cheaper at £215,444, but buyers will still need a £39,148 deposit.

The north-east and Northern Ireland were the cheapest areas with first-time buyer prices at £122,743 and £99,860 respectively, while buyers in Wales paid the lowest average deposits at £11,480.

“The government’s restrictions on the buy-to-let sector may seem to play into the hands of today’s first-time buyers, but future first-timers could pay the price.

“Demand for first-time properties to buy remains red hot, but demand for cheap properties to rent is also soaring – fuelled by a swelling population and increasing desire among many to move around the country following career opportunities.

“Cutting landlords out of the equation will simply drive this demand harder still, pushing up rents, and making saving for a deposit for a first home more difficult. First-time buyers are tenants too." Hello....isn't that what we've been saying???

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