Almost a third of all home movers are so-called “last-time movers”.
A new report from the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA) suggests almost 200,000 owner-occupier transactions in England are made by the over-55s.
Older homeowners cashing in
The research, entitled Last-Time Buyers: the challenges and opportunities for 55+ homeowners wanting to move, concludes that the number of older homeowners moving from the family home has doubled in the last decade.
Older homeowners are more likely to own their property outright – 84 percent of all outright owners are aged over 55 – while they also account for almost half of all housing equity, £1.8 trillion of a total £2.6 trillion.
That vast equity is powering those last-time buyers (LTBs) who do decide to move in older life.
More older homeowners are keen to downsize, but a lack of suitable properties is holding them back. That, in turn, means fewer family-sized homes on the market, trapping those who would like to upsize and meaning their smaller homes are not free for first-time buyers to move up the housing ladder.
Appetite to move
Kate Davies, executive director of the IMLA, said: “It’s clear there is much appetite among older homeowners to move into a property better geared to their needs in later life, but they face a number of headwinds in achieving that.
“From a lending perspective, we have already seen considerable financial innovation around mortgages into retirement, lifetime mortgages and retirement interest-only products. But there is much more that could be done.
“It may also be time for the Government to address this LTB policy blind spot and begin to work more closely with the lending and housebuilding sectors to kickstart activity, much as it did for first-time buyers.”
Ideal conveyancing service from Homeward Legal
No matter if you’re a last-time buyer looking to find your perfect retirement spot or a newcomer to the property market, Homeward Legal has the ideal conveyancing services for you.
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