80% of people aspire to homeownership in next decade

80% of people aspire to homeownership in next decade [Photo: BrianAJackson via iStock]

Owning a home has been a characteristic ambition within British culture for decades, and the latest research confirms that this trend is holding firm. 

According to research published by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), some 80 per cent of adults aspire to own a home within the next ten years. Furthermore, 72 per cent wish to achieve homeownership in two years' time.

These figures confirm that owning a property remains the preferred tenure choice for the British public.

However, the report, which was put together by CML chief economist Bob Pannell and based on a YouGov survey conducted on behalf of CML earlier this year, indicates that many people do not feel confident that their ambitions will come into fruition.

In fact, the majority of those surveyed felt that it is harder than ever for young people to purchase their own home. A further 75 per cent think that steps need to be taken to help first-time buyers get on the property ladder, whether that comes in the form of help from the government, local authorities, mortgage lenders or house builders. 

Potential measures that proved popular included incentives for saving for deposits and subsidies for first-time buyers. Mortgage interest tax relief and abolishing stamp duty were also ranked among the most favoured plans of action.

The research certainly suggests a lack of confidence among would-be buyers themselves. For example, less than a quarter of those who do not currently own a home, but would like to achieve that goal within the next two years, believe that they will actually do so. Confidence particularly tends to dip among younger people, with less than half of the 18-24 age group surveyed - who would like to own a home in ten years' time - believing they will manage it. 

Despite this lack of confidence, it's interesting to note that the desire to own a home doesn't seem to be diminishing. The study found that, as a general rule, private tenants view renting as a temporary rather than permanent situation. Close to three-quarters (71 per cent) would like to own their own property within the next decade, while 56 per cent of aspire to do so within the coming two years.

Far fewer private renters currently aim to stay in the rental market long-term - just 15 per cent hope to be renting in ten years time.

However, a recent survey from comparethemarket.com suggests that the struggle to own a home and the corresponding upswing in renting may continue to be a battle for the UK public. The figures suggested that as many as 5.5 million people nationwide consider their chances of homeownership very low, largely because of escalating prices and the difficulty of saving for a deposit.

Nevertheless, it seems that despite this, would-be buyers will not be dissuaded from their ambitions. The CML research found that people see the value of owning their own property as far more than financial. Indeed, the freedom that comes with homeownership was cited as one of the most popular reasons for wanting to own property.