1st-time buyers outstrip home movers for first time in 23 years

There were more first-time buyers than home movers in the first half of 2018, the first time the number of first-timers reaching the first rung of the housing ladder has outstripped movers since 1995.

New data from Lloyds Bank’s Homemover Review showed there were 170,000 home movers in the first six months of the year, compared to 175,500 first-time buyers in the same period.

Home movers made up around half (49 percent) of the housing market in that timescale, compared to 62 percent in 2011, and down 1 percent on 2017.

By contrast, the number of first-time buyers achieving their dream of home ownership rose by 3 percent on the same period year with more newcomers to home ownership than home movers for the first time in 23 years.

Andrew Mason, mortgage products director at Lloyds Bank, said: “Despite continuing low mortgage rates, the homemover market has stabilised with little movement in the first half of this year to leave first-time buyers now driving housing activity.

“This may be in part due to the Help to Buy scheme enabling first-time buyers to purchase a new property, combined with the low availability of the ‘right type’ of homes for those looking to move up the housing ladder.

“The costs of moving house and potential further interest rate rises may also be weighing on potential homebuyers’ minds.

“However, it is good to see the number of first-time buyers increasing, helping to keep some movement along the property ladder.”