The number of first-time buyers who ask for financial help from friends and family has gone up by 6% over the past 20 years, according to a new government survey.
While 21% of first-time buyers asked for help from friends and family back in 1994-1995, in 2014-2015 the number had risen to 27%, the English Housing Survey has revealed.
On a more positive note, the number of first-time buyers using their savings to help fund the purchase of a home has risen from 71% in 1994-1995 to 83% 20 years later.
The survey’s First Time Buyers and Potential Home Owners Report, 2014-2015 also found that buyers are now three years older when they buy their first home than they were 20 years ago. The average first-time buyer is now aged 33.
In 1994-1995, 61% of first-time buyers were aged 25 to 34 years and this has remained largely the same. However, over the 20-year period, the number of first-time buyers aged 16 to 24 has dropped significantly from 23% to 10%. Meanwhile, the number of first-time buyers aged 35 to 44 has almost doubled – from 11% to 20%.
The report also found that more couples are buying their first home together, with 80% doing this in 2014 to 2015, compare with 63% in 1994-1995. To coincide with this, the number of singletons buying their first home has halved from 29% to 14%.
Over the 20-year period, the number of first-time buyers has dropped by around 300,000 to 564,000, with first-time buyers accounting for 3% of households in 2014-2015.
‘Harder and harder for first-time buyers to get a foothold’
Commenting on the report, Paula Higgins, chief executive of the HomeOwners Alliance, says: “It continues to be harder and harder for first-time buyers to get that foothold on to the property market.
“The fact that first-time buyers are becoming older has a knock-on impact in that they are renting for longer, which may mean a later start if they wish to have a family. It’s unfair that people are relying on the Bank of Mum and Dad as not everyone has that option.”