Reallymoving: First-time buyers were driving force of the market last year

Michael Lloyd

January 7, 2020

First-time buyers were the driving force in the property market in 2019, accounting for 55.7% of all home purchases throughout the year according to Reallymoving.

Over a fifth used a government scheme to help them buy their first home, such as shared ownership (14.6%) and Help to Buy (7.3%).

Rob Houghton, chief executive of Reallymoving, said: “First-time buyers were the driving force in the market during 2019, encouraged by cheap loans, soft house prices and plenty of government support in the shape of shared ownership and Help to Buy which remain extremely popular.

“In terms of international moves, the UK fell sharply out of favour with people moving from the EU, as evidenced by a sharp decline in the proportion of EU residents making inward moves to the UK.

“Most home moves remained local with a remarkable 40% taking place within five miles of existing homes, suggesting that people were more motivated by extra space and more desirable properties than by major moves for new jobs or lifestyle changes.”

London received the highest volume of home movers in 2019, accounting for 12.1%.

The second most popular destination was Birmingham (3.2%), followed by Manchester (2.2%) and Reading (2%).

The busiest day of the year for moving home was Friday 30 August, with Friday being the most popular day to move throughout the year.

Those buying and selling a home typically paid £1,154 for conveyancing, excluding disbursements and expenses such as Land Registry fees.

First-time buyers meanwhile paid £677 on average.

Repeat movers, or those buying and selling at the same time, sold their homes for an average price of £237,000 and bought for an average price of £292,500.

Whilst first-time buyers across the UK largely escaped paying stamp duty on their purchases, repeat movers typically paid £4,625 on completion.

Sign up to our daily email