First-time buyers increasingly pushing the UK property market forward

First-time buyers increasingly pushing the UK property market forward [Photo: iStock/andresr]

First-time buyers are becoming one of the main drivers of growth in the property market across the UK, with a larger proportion of valuations being carried out on their behalf than at any time in the last few years, new data shows. 

According to findings from the Connells Survey & Valuation in its monthly report, half of all property valuations carried out in the month of July were done on behalf of those who were looking to get onto the ladder for the first time. It said this marked a significant rise of six per cent when compared to the five year average, showing the impact that new buyers are having on the market as a whole. 

John Bagshaw, corporate services director of Connells Survey & Valuation, said newcomers to the UK property market are helping it to grow, perhaps more than they have done in the last few years. 

"Demand from first-time buyers is supporting the housing market at the moment. People are eager to get on the property ladder, with record high employment and competitive mortgage rates. But this doesn’t mean it’s an easy task to get a foothold in the market. Economic conditions are still tough," he said. 

The findings were also supported by the evidence that shows first-timers are spending more on property than they have done in the last few years in order to get onto the ladder.

In June, some 36,000 mortgages were approved for first-timers. This marked an increase of some 22 per cent when compared to May, and six per cent against the same month last year. 

It also means that lending to newcomers to the property market has now hit its highest recorded level since November 2006, showing that there is, perhaps, once again a growing intention to own property among the younger elements of the population. 

However, Mr Bagshaw said first-timers still need support. "The increasing cost of living and house price inflation are making it harder to save for a deposit. House prices are around eight times higher than earnings and they’re rising twice as fast. With the value of a typical property rising £10,000 in a year, first-time buyers still need help," he said.