New research from Coulters Property has looked into the housing landscape for first-time buyers across the past 20 years.

The study looked at how much you would need to be able to afford a 10% deposit around the country, how much this is as a percentage of average annual income, and how this has changed over the last 20 years.

North West First Time Buyer Landscape (1999-2000)

House Price £50,145 £165,714 £115,569.50 230.47%
Deposit £5,014 £16,571 £11,557 230.49%
Earnings £16,977 £28,137* £11,160 65.74%
Deposit as % Earnings 29.50% 58.40% 28.90%


The North West, house prices have risen by 230.47% but earnings have only risen by 65.74%.

The deposit as % of earnings has increased by 28.95%.

“More than ever, there is a disparity between personal income and property prices, which these stats reiterate.

Buying a home in the UK is a defining tradition and a goal for many young people. Although being a first-time buyer is exciting, over recent years, the affordability gap has stretched and continued to do so every year, making it difficult to make the first step onto the property ladder. In these uncertain times, these inequalities have been made much more apparent, The recent raising of the trigger rates on stamp duty (and LBTT in Scotland) to help combat the economic consequences of the C-19 pandemic and lockdown, will undoubtedly particularly help first-time buyers and add valuable extra cash to be applied towards their deposit or other transaction costs such as legal fees. This is especially so in high-value urban areas where many first-time buyer properties would have otherwise been subject to stamp duty.

There’s no questioning that wages have increased with the rate of inflation, but have they increased enough? Despite recent schemes such as Help to Buy or part-ownership, house prices are expected to increase, with the possibility of a 15% increase over the next five years or so.”

(Mike Fitzgerald, Executive Chairman, at Coulters Property)

You can see the full research here.


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