Home mover housing market share sees significant fall

Recent figures have revealed a fall in the proportion of home movers purchasing properties over the past ten years.

According to the Home Mover Review from Lloyds Bank, the first six months of 2017 indicated that mortgages had been taken out by just 171,300 home movers, down by 2% in comparison to the same period last year.

The average price paid by home movers has seen a significant increase over the past five years, rising by 41% to £290,991. During the same period, the average deposit has grown by 40%, increasing from 2012’s average of £68,663 to £96,109 this year.

Commenting on the potential factors influencing home mover behaviour was Andrew Mason.  The mortgages products director for Lloyds Bank stated: “In the past year, the number of home movers appears to have stabilised despite continuing low-interest rates and rising employment.

“There are a number of factors which could be influencing this: more people are paying off their mortgages and not moving, with supply at historic low levels there could be a shortage of suitable homes coming on the market, and the cost of moving house could be putting people off.

“This has meant that home movers now account for just half of today’s housing market compared to a decade ago when it accounted for two-thirds of the market. This has a knock-on effect for first-time buyers as there will be fewer properties available for them also.”

Also commenting on the findings was Richard Sexton. The director of e.surv cited the difficulties many are being presented with when in search of a new property. He drew attention to the various barriers discouraging people from making the move, in turn, impacting the plans of those who may previously have been looking to relocate.

“The results highlight the ongoing struggles that many are facing when looking for adequate and affordable housing.

“With increasing house prices, living costs and inflation, many home owners, whether a young family looking for more space or older generations looking to downsize, are deciding to stay put.

“This starts a domino effect. If home buyers feel unable to move up the ladder, this reduces the amount of housing stock available for first-time buyers. Put simply, it prevents market growth. Although the market will not grind to a halt, as low-interest rates and the willingness of banks to lend keep demand up, these figures should serve as a warning.

“The Government must address our country’s lack of housing supply sooner rather than later, to allow more first-time buyers to step on to the property ladder.

“This will give a much-needed confidence boost to the housing market, give current homeowners the assurance they need to move, and ultimately, will keep the housing market fluid.”

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