Increasing numbers giving up dreams of property ownership

More than 250,000 non-home owners appear to have given up on the dream of owning their own property in the past year, according to a new study.

The HomeOwners Alliance (HOA) and BLP Insurance 2017 Homeowners Survey found that for the first time in five years, there has been a drop in the number of those aspiring to own their own property.

In 2013, 65% of non-home owners polled aspired to home ownership, and this increased each year to 73% in 2015 but fell to 71% last year.

The HomeOwners Alliance poll found that 39.45% of those surveyed don’t own a property. This figure was multiplied by the UK adult population of 51.3m to give a figure of 20m, and 71.6% of those said they still want to own a property, giving a final number of 253,166.

Among aspiring first-time buyers, 86% say house prices are their most serious concern, up 3% on last year, with 1% more than last year citing saving for a deposit as a barrier at 85%, and 2% more, or 80%, worried about the availability of homes.

Concerns were receding on issues such as negative equity and the ability to move up the housing ladder, with 42% of UK adults expressing concern about negative equity, compared with 44% last year.

Paula Higgins, chief executive of HomeOwners Alliance, said: “While we are used to stories about people not being able to buy a home until they are 40, the story has taken a turn for the worse with people increasingly giving up altogether on the dream of home ownership.

“While aspiring home owners’ concerns about house prices, saving for a deposit and housing supply grow, the change in political rhetoric around home ownership and a lack of new homes being built in the last year, plus the removal of flagship Government schemes like the Help to Buy mortgage guarantee, appear to have had a negative impact on consumer attitudes. People are feeling less optimistic about their chances of buying their first property.

“With the election approaching, it is vital that housing is placed at the forefront of the policy agenda and that whatever party is elected, it takes serious steps to address the growing concerns of aspiring home owners.”

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