By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies to enhance your experience.


Homeownership “a distant dream” for nine million renters

Nine million UK renters (45%) say they will never be able to afford their own home, according to the latest Post Office Money Mortgages survey.

The survey found that of the 20 million people currently renting a property in the UK, nearly half (45%) expect to remain shut out of the property market for the foreseeable future.

The average age that people expect to be able to get on the property ladder has risen to 36-years-old up from 35 last year, suggesting that rising house prices and the slow upturn in the economy remain challenges for first-time buyers. The expectation that they will have to wait until their mid-thirties is shared across most would-be buyers, with those in the East Midlands the most sceptical, fearing they will be 46 before buying a home of their own.


The survey revealed that raising a deposit is perceived as the biggest barrier to getting a foot on the property ladder. UK renters believe, on average, that it will take them eight-and-a-half years to save enough for a deposit, with one in ten (10%) expecting to wait for more than a decade.

However, one in four prospective home buyers (28%) claim they will never be able to afford a deposit unless their circumstances dramatically change through a better paid job or cash windfall. Not being able to afford mortgage repayments (17%) is also a key concern.

John Willcock, head of mortgages at Post Office Money, said: “The average age at which non-homeowners expect to get a foot on the property ladder has increased to 36 over the past year, which is a worrying trend. It is clear that there is still a long way to go to inspire confidence in the first-time buyers’ market, with nine million feeling they won’t ever be able to buy their own property.”

“The size of a deposit is clearly the biggest hurdle that people face, with only 31% expecting to be able to raise the money alone.”

A third (31%) of those looking to buy a property say they would save the full amount for the deposit themselves. One in four (25%) will take advantage of the government’s ‘Help to Buy’ scheme. Others will rely on loved ones with help from their parents (13%) or partners (19%).

Nearly half (46%) of those who don’t currently own a property say they would be encouraged by a fall in house prices, though this may still be a long way off as prices are still on the up, with a 5.7% increase in the year to June 2015.

Meanwhile, 26% of renters believe more assistance for first-time buyers from the Government would be a great help. Lower interest rates would lead 24% of non-home owners to buy in the near future, whilst the re-introduction of no stamp duty for first time buyers would encourage 14% to take the leap.

Hitting important milestones in life, such as getting married (13%) or starting a family (10%) are also triggers for first-time buyers.

However 11% of renters (more than two million people) say they enjoy the freedom of renting and admit they have no desire to own their own property.

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

  • icon

    ........ and the Government tax changes on Landlords announced in the Summer Budget will over the next 6 years will push up rents. This will make it even harder for renters to save for a Deposit.

    Vote against this measure here https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/104880

  • icon

    Yes, Barry. It is important to sign the petition and to write and/or visit your MP to protest against this measure - it is going to cause chaos for landlords and tenants. And before people blame landlords for increasing rents, what are we supposed to do when the Government wants us to pay massive amounts of tax even if our business makes a loss? Housing Associations receive subsidies from the Government; we don't. It's a bonkers tax which will drive landlords into the ground and this will mean massive disruption for tenants. Reverse the 'tax relief restriction.' (it's not tax relief - it's offsetting the costs of running our business and no other business in the UK is being asked to pay tax on their turnover - because it's a mad idea)

  • icon

    You can buy a decent house in Nottingham and other parts of the country for less than £80,000. The problem with first time buyers today is they want the same as Mum & Dad and are only interested in 3 or 4 bed detached houses.

    If the government want to help people with deposits they should lend the money on a similar basis to student loans. For example if they lend 20% for a deposit then they receive back 20% when the property is sold. That way they are not only helping people get on the market they are actually investing the money with the possibility of a good return

  • Axel Roberts

    The government's focus shouldn't be lending more money, it should be on lowering living costs and tax so people have a better chance of affording a property deposit on their own.


Please login to comment

MovePal MovePal MovePal
sign up