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First-time buyers sitting on 377m

First-time buyers should be selling up not packing up as research from The Co-operative Bank reveals they are sitting on a collective fortune of 377m in unwanted duplicate possessions.

The research undertaken to mark the recent launch of the Banks first-time buyer mortgage service reveals that couples buying their first home together could add on average nearly 1,000 to their deposit fund if they sold the items they double up on.

So well equipped are todays first-time buyers that spare items go far beyond a surplus kettle or the odd CD. In fact, many couples even have items in triplicate. A gadget-friendly one in eight confess to owning three or more DVD or video players, and one in seven have three or more home computers.

David Newman, director of marketing management at The Co-operative Bank says: As the average age of first-time buyers has risen to 34 its no surprise that purchasers have amassed, quite literally a wealth of household items which can often double when buying a first home together. Savvy first time buyers can free up much-needed cash by selling these possessions to help fund their property purchase.

Yet 58% will not sell their duplicate belongings with nearly half, 47%, believing that their spare goods are worth too little to sell and one in eight literally throwing money away by binning or dumping their spare items. Nearly a third stash duplicate items in the loft and a generous two in five give them away to friends or family.

For those who do want to unlock these untapped funds, selling the eBay way is by far the most popular choice with over 80% citing online auction sites as a preferred second-hand sales option.

David Newman continued: “At The Co-operative Bank we understand as well as being an expensive time, getting onto the property ladder can be daunting for first-time buyers. So weve launched a mortgage range tailored specifically to meet their needs, and a new mortgage minder telephone service with the same person handling the application throughout for peace of mind.

Northern first-time buyers are laughing all the way to the bank with the highest average re-sale value of 1371 in spare household goods, while Scottish respondents bring up the rear owning just 273 on average in replicated belongings.

In addition the Bank has also launched a First Time Buyers Guide, available for download at www.co-operativebank.co.uk. The guide features information on issues such as how to choose the right type of mortgage, how to select and deal with estate agents and solicitors, what types of surveys are available and how to choose the right one. The guide includes a glossary of useful mortgage terms and conditions.

More products and services for first time buyers are due to launch in the coming months.

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