Bleak outlook keeps property purchase weak

Nia Williams

March 16, 2011

The Property Tracker shows that 41% of people think that it would currently be a good time to buy, down from 43% in December. However, 29% disagree that it would be good to buy now, up from 26% in the last survey.

The proportion saying that a lack of job security was a barrier to purchasing property increased to 57% in March from 53% in December and 58% of respondents also cited raising a deposit as a barrier to purchase.

Just 5% of respondents did not think that people should aspire to own their own home. The primary reasons that people cited for aiming to become homeowners were because they would take pride in their property, that they could make a place their own, because it provides stability and security, and that it increases their wealth over time.

Commenting on the March Property Tracker survey, Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage policy at the BSA, said: “The Property Tracker indicates that people continue to aspire to own their own home, despite an increased level of concern about job security. Home ownership means they can make the improvements to their property that they want, it gives them stability, and they also believe they may see their wealth increase over time. These motives appear to be intertwined, showing the reasons for home ownership are complex.

“However, people believe that substantial barriers to buying property persist. These include raising a deposit, a lack of job security, and difficulty obtaining a large enough mortgage. Against the uncertain economic outlook, job insecurity increased slightly as a barrier in the latest results.

“These findings support what I proposed at the Government’s First Time Buyer summit last month: there is no single easy solution to get the housing market moving again. The barriers preventing existing homeowners from moving need to be addressed just as much as impediments to new buyers.”

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