The average income of first-time buyers was £16,000 higher than that of the average household in 2014-15, new figures reveal.
The figures suggest that only those on significantly higher-than-average incomes are managing to get onto the property ladder or feel able to make the financial commitment involved.
First-time buyers had an average yearly income of £43,000, but for the average household this was just £27,000, according to the Government’s English Housing Survey.
In the last ten years the proportion of first time buyers that needed help from friends and family for their deposit increased from 22 per cent to 27 per cent. Single people are finding it particularly hard to buy on their own. In 2014-15 a massive 80 per cent of all first time buyers were couple households – an increase from 62 per cent ten years ago.
Meanwhile, the number of people renting privately continues to grow. In 2014-15, 19 per cent of all households were private renters – a total of 4.3 million households. This is a huge increase from the 11 per cent of households who were renting privately a decade ago.
Shelter chief executive Campbell Robb says: “These figures are a glaring reminder that this country’s drastic shortage of genuinely affordable homes means for millions finding a place to call their own is fast becoming out of reach.
“Instead more and more people on ordinary incomes have no choice but to face a lifetime of expensive, unstable private renting, unless they’re lucky enough to have help from friends and family.
“The new government has a real chance to ease the pressure on young people and families in these uncertain times by making housing a top priority, and bringing forward measures to quickly start building homes that people on ordinary incomes can actually afford to rent or buy.”