Number of first-time buyers at 'lowest since 1974'
Published by 24publishing for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Central Government, Communities, Local Government
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The number of first-time buyers (FTBs) in the UK has plummeted to the lowest annual total since records began in 1974, data from Halifax shows.
In 2011, the annual total of 187,000 was less than half the number of first-time buyers in 2006 when there were 403,000.
This, despite affordability currently being at its most favourable level since 2003. Its data shows that the average house price paid by a first-time buyer in November 2011 was affordable for someone on average earnings in 44% of all local authority districts (LADs). This compares with 42% in 2010 and just 5% at the peak of the housing market in 2007.
However, it said the North/South divide remains "stark" with 95% of all the areas affordable for first time buyers being in the North.
Halifax cited bigger deposits for much of the fall in the number of FTBs.
Its research shows that the average FTB deposit in the first 11 months of 2011 was £27,032. In 2007, the figure was £17,482.
Its research found South Ayrshire to be the most affordable area in the UK for a FTB. The least affordable area was Brent in London.