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FTBs are getting older and wiser with bigger deposits

First-time buyers in the UK are making their first step on to the housing ladder at a later age and putting down relatively bigger deposits than 20 years ago, says mortgage lender Halifax.

Its new research, 20 Years of First-time Buyers, reveals that the average age of a first-time buyer is now 33, up from 31 in 1983.

Sixteen per cent of the total first-time buyers are 25 compared with 30 per cent in 1983.

Halifax says there are a number of reasons for this trend, including people spending longer in education, having families later in life and the need for more geographical mobility to find jobs.

Its first-time buyer house price index shows that the average property price for a first time buyer is £84,649 compared with £21,468 in 1983.

First-time buyers are putting down a deposit of about 19 per cent of the property&#39s value up from 16 per cent 20 years ago. There is also a change in the type of home they buy, with 24 per cent choosing a flat or maisonette compared with 17 per cent in 1983.

Only 23 per cent opt for a semi-detached house, down from 30 per cent 20 years ago, which Halifax says is a reflection of social and demographic changes in the UK.

Chief economist Martin Ellis says: “First-time buyers are getting older, wiser and putting down bigger deposits. Affordability is good across the UK, except in Greater London and the South of England, where first-time buyers are finding it increasingly difficult to get on the housing ladder.”

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