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In spite of the Covid-19 pandemic and three lockdowns, there have been some surprising statistics to come out of research recently conducted by Hamptons. The pandemic has led to an increase in the number of million-pound first-time buyers, mainly in London.
Hamptons discovered that one in fifty first time buyers in 2020 spent over £1 million on their first home. This is more than double the number in 2019; and looks to be as a result of various Covid related factors. The need for increased space to work from home, combined with the attractive mortgage rates and the stamp duty holiday brought about by the pandemic, have led many who had saved deposits for city flats to look further afield for more space for their money.
Buyers in London are still the most likely to be spending a seven-figure sum. But for first time buyers in the South, the number has increased to one in twenty-five; double that of 2019 and four times that of 2018.
As a result, the average price of a first home has broken the £250,000 mark for the first time. The average price for a first-time buyer in the South is now £360,640, more than double that of somebody buying their first home in the North of the country.
The average age of the first-time buyer continues to rise as well. Many are waiting longer and buying a family home as their first purchase, rather than taking the traditional first step on the property ladder with a flat in the city.
Although the biggest number of first-time buyers spending £1 million or more on their first homes fell within Westminster local authority, three out of the top five local authorities were outside London. 50% of first-time buyers in Sevenoaks, Kent spent £1 million plus on their first home.
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