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27th October 2015

A third of September property purchases in the UK made by first time buyers

First time buyers accounted for almost a third of property sales across the UK in September.
The National Association of Estate Agents say first time buyer sales rose by 9% from August to 29% last month – equalling the previous high in May. The NAEA put the increase down to a combination of a wider range of mortgage products being made available and the threat of an interest rate rise being postponed until the spring.

However the overall number of house hunters dropped in September after an exceptionally busy July and August. And the overall number of properties on the market for sale dropped marginally too.

“It’s obviously very positive to see that the number of sales being made to first time buyers has risen this month,” said Mark Hayward, the NAEA’s managing director.

“We’re seeing a whole range of new competitive mortgage products coming on to the market, which is likely to be encouraging first steppers to take the plunge, as well as the fact that the ‘impending’ interest rate rise has now been pushed back to next year at the very earliest.”

The number of house-hunters registered per estate agent branch dropped in September, following a period of “high and unsustainable demand” in July and August according to the association. On average, there were 342 prospective buyers registered at each NAEA member branch in September, compared with 408 in August, and 462 house-hunters per branch in July, which was an 11 year high.

The number of properties available to buy dropped marginally to 37 per member branch in September, compared to 55 in July and 38 in August.

Mark Hayward commented: “If we could just get supply and demand to meet in the middle, the housing market would be functional again. This means that the army of house-hunters looking to buy has out-grown the number of housing available at a rapid rate.”

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