Nobody is taking advantage of renewed confidence in the U.K.’s property market more than older home buyers, who are responsible for an increasing number of property deals in the region, according to Tuesday’s quarterly report from data analytics firm TwentyCi.
Homeowners aged 66 and over were responsible for some 43,000 property transactions in the first quarter of 2018, a 46% increase compared to the same quarter in 2017, the report said.
Transactions are being fuelled by a combination of pension drawdown and equity retrieval as the generation accesses their accumulated wealth, the report said.
“Owners who have been in their properties for many years have significant accumulated equity in most cases. This is effectively a wasted asset, so it is good to see providers enabling owners to remain in their homes while unlocking this capital to spend,” said Colin Bradshaw, chief customer officer at TwentyCi, in the report.
Nationally, property transactions are up nearly 8% from the same quarter in 2017 and have recovered from the typical end-of-year slowdown as over 100,000 more properties have come on the market in the last three months than during the tail end of last year.
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This activity suggests increased confidence and stability in the real estate market as the political and economic turbulence eases while a Brexit pathway becomes clearer, the report said. Though, Mr. Bradshaw noted, “there’ll be many more twists and turns before we fully understand the post-Brexit landscape.”
At the other end of the spectrum, purchases by younger buyers aged between 18 and 35 have nosedived so far this year, with a 24% decline in transactions in the last three months.
The generational disparity is echoed in the region’s total housing equity. Britain’s homeowners over the age of 50 control 75% of the nation’s entire housing wealth with a total of £2.8 trillion (US$3.94 trillion) in real estate equity, according to a report last Wednesday by Savills. Homeowners under 35, meanwhile, control 5.8% of Britain’s housing wealth, equating to a comparatively measly £214 billion (US$301 billion) of equity.
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