Average UK first-time buyer home tops £223k

The average first-time buyer in the UK is spending £223,751 on their first property, according to new analysis from Direct Line Home Insurance.

Research by the insurance provider found that the average first-time buyer needs to find £43,623 more than they did in 2016, a 24% increase, to secure their first property.

Over the same period, the average salary of an individual in their thirties – the decade that most people buy their first property – has risen by just 10%, leaving this cohort with a huge deficit.

A typical first-time buyer property is now worth roughly seven times a 30 to 39-year old’s annual salary, Direct Line also revealed. This is a rise from 2016 when it was six times, making the first step on the property ladder increasingly harder to reach.

Direct Line’s analysis suggests that first-time buyer prices are being impacted by the movements of those in their thirties across the UK. The average property price for a first-time buyer in the 10 local authorities that saw the greatest increase in residents aged 30-39 between 2016 and 2021 increased by 24%. In the 10 authorities with the greatest decrease in the number of residents aged between 30 and 39, there was a 2% decrease in first-time buyer property prices.

Head of Direct Line Home Insurance, Dan Simson, commented “The rate at which first-time buyer prices have been increasing is frankly frightening. However, this generation of property owners are facing the challenge of dramatically increasing property prices in traditionally popular areas such as London and instead are buying in places that are less well-known.

“We may see an even more dramatic emergence of these ‘young towns and cities’ with the increasing prevalence of remote working that enables people to be far more flexible as to where they live. Given the commitment people need to make to get on the property ladder, it is vital they protect their investment with insurance should the worst happen.”

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