We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our website.
Accept All Cookies
Find out more
Cookie Portal
Manage and find out more about the cookies used on this website.
View Cookie Settings
Read Cookie Policy

Accept All Cookies and Close
Close Without Saving
< Back
This website has 3 types of cookies:
Your preferences will not take affect until the next page loads or this page is reloaded.
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Feature Cookies
Performance Cookies
Save and Close
< Back
< Back
Cookie Policy
< Back
Any bedrooms
Any bedrooms
1 or more bedrooms
2 or more bedrooms
3 or more bedrooms
4 or more bedrooms
5 or more bedrooms
Branches selected
All properties
Toggle Filter
First time buyers now saving for four years Image

10th October 2018
First time buyers now saving for four years

According to the Evening Standard's Homes & Property Newsletter, first-time buyers are spending an average of four years working overtime, taking no holidays, cutting out takeaways and moving back in with their parents in order to save for a deposit.

Aspiring buyers typically set aside 20 per cent of their average household salary, amounting to more than £1,000 per month in London.

First-time buyers save about 70 per cent of their deposit themselves, which in London has now reached more than £100,000 in 12 of the 33 boroughs.

Buyers are most likely to make lifestyle changes, some of them pretty drastic, rather than compromise on the type or location of property they buy, according to a new report from Post Office Money, who surveyed more than 1,000 people who bought their first home in the past two years.


Almost all the first-time buyers (92 per cent) said they sacrificed luxuries including holidays, nights out or takeaways. But more than one fifth of first-time buyers have moved home to save more money, either back in with their parents or finding a cheaper property to rent while saving.

Cutting back on big purchases: Sean Wheatley bought in Forest Gate with two friends after saving hard for two years


Sean Wheatley, 38, works in acquisitions at a television distribution company. He bought a house in Forest Gate for £475,000 with two friends he’d been renting with in Hackney.

“It wasn’t really hard because I’ve been saving regular amounts for quite a long time, having had a good job for a while,” he says.

“It was mostly about cutting back on big purchases. Normally I’d go on a couple of holidays a year and I didn’t do any last year or this year. I’d also normally go out clothes shopping every season but since we decided to buy, if I’ve got a hole in my work shoes, say, I’ll get a new pair but nothing else.

“If you try and live on a diet of pasta and baked beans it’s like any drastic diet, you won’t stick to it.”

As well as cutting back on spending, 84 per cent of those surveyed also found ways to boost their incomes in order to save more, with a third of respondents taking on overtime, 21 per cent looking for a higher paying role and 17 per cent even looking for additional work.


The research questioned people who have managed to buy a first home within the past two years, and so does not address affordability concerns of aspiring first-time buyers or those who feel priced out of the market completely.

Saving for an average of four years also meant that many first-time buyers found they could no longer afford to buy in their chosen location in a rising property market.

Post Office Money created an online tool mapping affordability in different locations and has pinpointed the UK’s 10 most affordable areas for first-time buyers.

Rotherham: the city has become more affordable for first-time buyers over the last year (Alamy Stock Photo)


Comparing the average first-time buyer income in each area with the average house price, the lender found three cities where first-time buyers could afford to buy in every neighbourhood: Blackpool, Lincoln and Hull.

Blackpool was the most affordable with an average house price of £112,000 and local household income of first-time buyers averaging £39,600.

Reading was one of the least affordable cities for first-time buyers, with the average house price totalling £305,000. No neighbourhoods in the popular commuter hub were considered affordable to the region’s first-time buyers compared to five years ago when 67 per cent were within budget for local first-time buyers.

“Due to house-price growth outpacing the average wage increases of first-time buyers, properties are slightly less affordable than they were a year ago,” said Ross Hunter of Post Office Money.

“In areas of relatively strong house price growth, such as the Midlands and Southern England, for instance, prices increased between two and three per cent in 2017, despite first-time buyer income being broadly flat.

“However, first-time buyers should not be disheartened. There is still a large number of areas with high-levels of affordability if FTBs are willing to search.

Leave a comment


First time buyers now saving for four years Image

Top ten home moving statistics of 2019

Home move comparison site,, has revealed ten statistics that together tell the story of UK home movers during 2019, including when people moved, how far they went, the most popular destinations and of course, what it all cost.

Read article

January still best for a quick property sale

The latest research released by the HomeOwners Alliance has revealed that now remains the best time to list your property for a speedy sale, with homes listed in January selling the fastest than in any other month of the year.

Read article