Moving in with parents could cut 33 years off saving for a deposit for first-time buyers

A new report reveals that London renters will have to save for 40 years to get on the property ladder, and an average of nine years outside of the capital, unless they move back to the family home...

London's single renters in their twenties need to save for 40 years for a deposit to buy their first home.

The report by Hamptons International is based on someone on the average salary in the capital of £25,000 and hoping to take out a £430,000 mortgage with a 15 per cent deposit — the average needed for a London home.

However, the 40-year wait could be cut to just seven and a half years for those with parents who live within commuting distance of London and are prepared to let their offspring move back into the family home and, crucially, not pay any keep.

Even this is not a perfect solution, or indeed a short stint – the ringleaders of the Hatton Garden heist are serving less time and some parents and children will probably feel they're serving a sentence at some point during the arrangement. Obviously, if parents demand any contribution towards household costs the length of time it will take to save for a deposit will increase.

For couples, living apart with their own parents, or together if one set of parents has the space and the patience, the data suggests that the time to save for a deposit would be drastically reduced by a third, to a more manageable three years.

The situation is not confined to London, thanks to spiralling house prices and rents rising faster than wages, and a quarter of 21-34 year-olds across the country are now living with their parents.

England and Wales
The average age of a first-time buyer is now just over 30. The Halifax Generation Rent report, released today, reveals that one in three expect to work beyond retirement age to pay off their mortgage, and almost half of buyers are worried that they won't be able to afford their mortgage repayments in retirement at all.

According to Hamptons International’s Time to Save Index, first-time buyers across the country could reduce the time to save for a deposit from 13 years to four years by living at home, while a couple could reduce the time from three and a half years to 18 months.

“While slower house price growth and higher wages made affordability a bit better in 2015, first-time buyers still face high barriers to achieving home ownership because of the size of deposit required," says Fionnuala Earley, residential research director at Hamptons International.

“Being able to buy a home in a reasonable amount of time means they need to find ways to save more of their income. For many, this means moving back home with mum and dad and saving on the largest expense they face - rent."

The statistics are sobering, but it's not all bad news for those unable to live rent free.

Some of the big lenders, including Santander and Nationwide, are offering 95 per cent mortgages, which means that even with paying rent, eligible single buyers on careful budgets could get on to the property ladder within six years, and couples in just over a year.

There's also the Government's Help to Buy scheme, where first-time buyers can get an equity loan of up to 40 per cent of the purchase price of the property, and shared-ownership homes, where those hoping to get on the ladder can buy a 25 per cent share in a property and slowly build up the amount they own.

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