First-time buyer numbers growing - Palmers Solicitors

First-time buyer numbers growing

The number of first-time home buyers has risen to its highest level in seven years, new figures have shown.

According to research issued by lender Halifax early in January, 326,000 people bought their first home in 2014, an increase of 22 per cent on the year before and the highest level since 2007, when the financial crisis began.

Halifax said first-time buyers were involved in nearly half of all mortgage-based purchases in 2014, compared with just over a third in 2007.

First-time buyers paid an average of £171,870 for their home, nine per cent more than a year ago, but the average cost of their deposit fell by seven per cent to £29,218.

Meanwhile, the government released figures on 8 January showing that more than 73,000 homes have been bought with support from the government’s Help to Buy scheme, with first-time buyers making up 83 per cent of the total.

Help to Buy offers equity loans to first time buyers and home movers with a deposit of at least five per cent of the value of new build homes with a purchase price of up to £600,000. It also offers mortgage guarantees of up to 15 per cent on new build and older homes worth up to £600,000, where the buyer is contributing at least five per cent of the property price as a deposit.

Clare Butcher, an associate solicitor at Palmers specialising in residential property, said: “These new figures are really encouraging news for first-time buyers and suggest that it is becoming much easier for them to access mortgages, in sharp contrast to the aftermath of the financial downturn when credit was in short supply.”

“First-time buyers stepping onto the property ladder will find that working with legal advisors experienced in residential property matters is a wise investment, to help resolve difficulties and avoid delays. At Palmers, we also have extensive experience in Help to Buy purchases and can provide expert advice and support to assist both first-time buyers and home movers. For more information, please contact our Property team.”