The number of current homeowners moving house was down 2% year-on-year during the first six months of 2017, the latest Lloyds Bank Homemover Review has revealed.
There were 171,3001 homemovers in the first half of 2017 compared with 174,300 in the same period in 2016.
The first half of 2016 saw 18,000 more homemovers (an increase of 11% compared to the first half of 2015). This increase may have been due to owners making home purchases before the introduction of the new stamp duty charges for second and additional homes.
Andrew Mason, Lloyds Bank mortgage products director, said: “In the past year, the number of homemovers appears to have stabilised despite continuing low interest rates and rising employment. There are a number of factors which could be influencing this, more people are paying off their mortgages and not moving, with supply at historic low levels there could be a shortage of suitable homes coming on the market and the cost of moving house could be putting people off.
“This has meant that homemovers now account for just half of today’s housing market compared to a decade ago when it accounted for two-thirds of the market. This has a knock on affect for first time buyers as there will be fewer properties available for them also.”
Since hitting a market low of 117,900 in the first half of 2009, the number of homemovers has grown by 45% (or 53,000). However, the current numbers still remain at just under half (48%) of what it was before the financial crash in the first half of 2007 (327,600).
A decade ago, just under two-thirds (64%) of all house purchases financed by a mortgage were made by homemovers. In 2017, this proportion has dropped to almost half (51%).
Over the past five years, the average price paid by homemovers has grown by 41% (£84,869) from £206,122 in 2012, to £290,9913 in June 2017, equivalent to a monthly rise of £1,414.
In London, the average homemover price has grown by 56% since June 2012 to £561,032, the highest in the UK. The average homemover price in the capital is 41% or £163,579 higher than the South East (£397,452) which is the second most expensive. Northern Ireland has lowest average price of £165,404.
The average deposit put down by a homemover has increased by 40% in the past five years, from £68,663 in 2012 to £96,109 in 2017. Not surprisingly Londoners put down the largest deposit towards the purchase of their next home; £188,916 – four times higher than the average homemover deposit of £48,080 in Northern Ireland, the lowest.