Insights into First-Time Home Buyers in the UK

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Entering the property market for the first time is both an exciting and challenging experience for many. Recent data analysed by Go.Compare, using government statistics, sheds light on the trends and preferences of first-time home buyers in the UK, revealing some intriguing facts.

A Consistent Age but Changing Demographics

One surprising constant is the average age of first-time buyers, which has held steady at 33 since 1990. Despite this consistency, the demographic makeup of these buyers has shifted considerably. Over the last three decades, there’s been a noticeable decrease of 18.1% in home buyers under the age of 25. Conversely, the proportion of buyers aged 35-44 has increased by 9.5%. This shift suggests that entering the property market is becoming more challenging for the younger generation, potentially due to factors like rising property prices and more stringent mortgage requirements.

The Love for Older Homes

Despite the challenges, UK buyers have a clear preference when it comes to the style of their potential homes. A significant 64% would choose an older property as their dream home if money were no object. This preference underscores a fondness for the unique character and aesthetic qualities that older buildings can offer, compared to the often more utilitarian new builds.

The Real Cost of Insurance

When it comes to insuring their homes, first-time buyers face higher costs if they opt for older properties. The study from Go.Compare reveals that the average annual insurance cost for older homes is £185, which is £39 more than the £146 required for newer constructions. This difference is even more pronounced in buildings-only insurance, where older homes cost £62 more on average to insure than their newer counterparts.

Ceri McMillan, a home insurance expert at Go.Compare, points out that while older homes are more costly to insure, there are effective ways to reduce these expenses. Maintaining and updating the property and bundling different types of insurance can help keep costs down.

Financial Tips for First-Time Buyers

For those looking to make their first foray into the property market, here are a few financial tips:

  • Budget Wisely: Understand all the costs involved, not just the purchase price. This includes insurance, taxes, maintenance, and unexpected repairs.
  • Insurance Savings: Look for ways to get discounts on your insurance, such as installing security systems or updating old plumbing and electrical systems, which can also prevent costly disasters down the line.
  • Government Schemes: Investigate government schemes available for first-time buyers, which can offer financial assistance through loans or grants.

Final Thoughts

The path to homeownership as a first-time buyer is filled with decisions—from choosing the type of home to managing the ongoing costs. Understanding these elements can help new buyers make informed choices that align with their long-term financial goals. While the market may present challenges, particularly for younger buyers, the dream of owning a home is still within reach with careful planning and savvy financial strategies.

If you’re looking to buy your first home, please get in touch

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

Approved by The Openwork Partnership on 7th May 2024

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