Good and Bad News for First Time Buyers
23rd January 2012

A recent survey has revealed that property prices are more affordable than any time since 2003.

The average price paid by a first time buyer in November 2011 was affordable for buyers on average wages in 44% of all local authorities.  This is a huge improvement on figures from the height of the property market in 2007 where the figure was only 5% and compares favourably with 2010 as the price paid is down by 3%.

The situation appear rosier for first time buyers in the north where the average deposit is 15% whereas Londoners will find themselves paying as much as 25%.

However, the number of first time is still falling and was down to a record low in 2011.  This is thought to be because more stringent lending criteria set by the lenders.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders estimates that 64% of first time buyers will require financial assistance from family which is believed to be double the amount 5-6 years ago

Another stubbing block for buyers this year will be the return of stamp duty for first time buyers.  The government has confirmed that they do not intend to extend exemption for those paying between £125,000.00 and £250,000.00 beyond 24th March 2012.  This should give an initial boost the first time market in the first quarter of the year but figures are expected to fall away afterwards.

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