Start saving – you might have home deposit in next 10 years
Housebuyers in the South West need a period of nine years and 11 months to save-up enough money for a deposit for a new home, according to the latest study from industry experts.
The region comes second only to London in the survey which has the longest wait of more than ten years counting the pennies.
According to Barclays Bank, aspiring homeowners will need financial support from family members as they face a wait eight times longer than in the mid-1990s to get a first foot on the housing ladder.
Although 60% of people in the region need help securing a property, the report went on to say that only 30% will be lucky enough to receive financial support from their families. And of that number two in five regard the hand-out as a gift that they will not have to pay back.
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Analysts at Barclays said the lengthy wait is often the result of "miscalculated budgeting" as most first-time buyers underestimate how much they have to save in the South West.
Across the region the average deposit required to buy a home is now 20% of the property price compared with 5% in 1995, setting todays savers back years.
The latest gloomy prediction for potential home-owners comes after the Western Morning News last week reported the frustrating position those who have managed to gain a foothold in the housing market and want to upgrade now face.
According to Lloyds TSB, so-called "second-steppers" are unable to move into bigger more expensive properties in the South West because of a lack of movement in the housing market.
This particular group are said to be unable to move into larger houses in more affluent areas because they do not have enough equity in their current property.
The average second-stepper home in the South West has a price tag of £219,647 according to Lloyds.
Bank chiefs said the major hurdle second-steppers face is that their equity in their current home accounts for a mere 7% of the asking price of a typical home they are after, compared with 42% in 2005.
Robin Thomas of Strutt & Parker estate agents, Exeter, said first and second-time buyers faced a number of hurdles scraping enough money together for a new property.
He said: "It's very, very difficult for first-time buyers to get a deposit together because wages in the South West are so low and property prices are certainly in the top five across the country.
"On top of low wages if they're living in rented accommodation saving money is hard because rents have shot-up in recent years.
"A few years ago they might have been paying £300-£400 a month rent and today they could well be looking at £600-£700 a month.
"Second-steppers face similar difficulties because wages are low and the cost of living is rising with energy and food bills on the rise.
"This group will probably include couples who got married five or so years ago and bought a house. They've had one baby and now with another one on the way they need a bigger place.
"With the extra costs a family entails it's almost impossible to save-up the larger deposits banks and building societies are now demanding."
Mr Thomas said the difficulties housebuyers face would help stabilise property prices. He said: "With the combination of all the difficulties I cannot see property prices increasing."