View more on these topics

First-time buyers a rare species

The number of first-time home buyers is plummeting and set to hit a

record low this year, according to research from Nationwide.

It says that if the current trend continues, the number entering the

market will drop to 400,000, falling below its lowest-ever level of

1995 when the total was 435,000.

Its monthly house price report found activity in the housing market

dropped 6 per cent in the quarter to March with 123,000 house sales

from 131,000 in December.

It attributes this fall to fewer FTBs in the market, a result of a

demographic fall in the numbers of 20-34-year-olds and lifestyle

changes such as people going into higher education and settling down

later in life, as well as affordability.

In the first quarter of 2003, the average monthly number of FTBs

dropped by more than 25 per cent to 27,000 from 38,000 over the same

period in 2002. The price of a typical FTB property price is up by

nearly 150 per cent since 1995, to £96,000 from £38,912.

Nationwide&#39s report also shows that annual house price inflation

slowed in April to 22.2 per cent compared to 26.2 per cent in March.

The average house price in April is now £122,748, up from

£122,180 in March.

Group economist Alex Bannister says: “We expect affordability to

continue to reduce the ability of many first-time buyers to enter the

market. This, combined with the realisation that in the current

economic environment mortgage payments relative to income will not

fall as quickly as in the past, will produce a move back towards a

more sustainable pace of house price growth. A sustained period of

lower house sales and house price inflation looks a likely outcome –

even if this appears to be a return to the sort of housing market

cycles seen back in the 1950s.”

Recommended

Govt is urged to top up savings for less well-off

Virgin Money is calling on the Government to introduce acontribution-matching scheme to encourage the take-up of savingsproducts among low-income groups.It is calling for a means-tested scheme that would see the Governmentmatching savers contributions pound for pound up to a limit of£500.Virgin is also calling for the Government to stop promoting cautiousmanaged funds within the Sandler […]

Revival of regional exchanges set to boost IFA business

A planned revival of regional stock exchanges across the UK togenerate more investment in SMEs could bring new inv-estment businessfor IFAs.The exchanges, being set up by regional chambers of commerce andregional development agencies, are set to target individual IFAs andIFA networks as distribution channels to encourage local investmentin local businesses. There are plans to develop […]

Coming of age

The child trust fund is a major opportunity for everyone involved inthe financial services industry to start a new savings culture – aculture that might have some chance of sticking.While this big savings idea was in the 2001 Labour manifesto, it isgood to see it is now coming to fruition.Parents, grandparents or other family members […]

Bubble and squeak

Further to our recent discussions, we now have £180,000available to invest. We would like to achieve a better return than iscurrently available in the bank and building society but without therisk of investing directly into stocks and shares. My wife has asmall pension in her own name but, apart from that, the rest of ourpension […]

The fifteen-year itch

By Neil Jones Technical support manager with Canada Life’s ican Technical Services Team. Canada Life offers a range of wealth management solutions, including retirement income planning, estate planning and investment solutions from a choice of jurisdictions, including the UK, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland. The treatment of non-UK domiciles that are resident in […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment