We Should Keep First Time Buyers Sweet
It’s clear that first time buyers have very much re-established themselves as a core part of the property market since the recovery started post the credit crunch. The Halifax data clearly shows that FTBs (rightly) decided to rent/stay at home rather than buy during the recession, saving them from potential negative equity issues. This was a sensible move, but statistically has artificially driven up the average age of a first time buyer which will hopefully fall back over the next few years.
Although we haven’t fully recovered to pre-credit crunch sales volumes, FTBs are now a major driver of the property market, partly thanks to government initiatives such as Help to Buy, and this will hopefully improve further following the ‘fall out’ of buy to let investors. But the increased demand and not enough properties on the market means that property price inflation for first time buyers does appear to be slightly higher than other properties, when averaged out, around 6-7%. As with all property data, since the credit crunch we are seeing vast differences on a regional basis, so much so that ‘national averages’ for first time buyers are incredibly misleading to consumers and policy makers and should be ignored.