Most people in England own their own home, representing 63% of all households but they are older than they were 20 years ago, the latest official survey of the state of housing shows.
In 2016/2017 there were 14.4 million households that either owned their home outright or were buying with a mortgage but there are more owning outright at 34% than with a mortgage at 28%.
The latest edition of the English Housing Survey published by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government also shows that home owners are older. In 2016/2017, the proportion of home owners under 35 was 9% yet two decades ago it was 18%.
It also found that outright owners tend to be older, with 61% of such households being aged over 65 and those with mortgages are more likely to be young families with dependent children.
In 2016/2017 some 40% of mortgagors were couples with dependent children and of outright owners 44% were couples with no children, while home owners are more likely to be in higher income groups than renting households. They are also slightly more likely to be in work now than 20 years ago.
The survey shows that 49% of all home owners in 2016/2017 were in the top two quintiles for household income. For mortgagors only, this figure was 66%. More than a third of private renters and 12% of social renters were among the top two household income quintiles.
Mortgagors spend a smaller proportion of their income on housing costs than do those in other tenures. The proportion has remained relatively consistent over the past 10 years, save for some household types.
The proportion of recent movers across all home owners has not significantly changed over the past 20 years, however, there was an increase in moves among outright owners. In 2016/2017 some 24% of recent movers were from a home owned outright compared to 12% in 1996/1997.
Home owners were less likely to be planning a move in the next six months than those in other tenures. Of all owner occupiers some 4% expected to move in the next six months compared to 7% of social renters and 18% of private renters.
Reasons for wanting to move home were consistent with the age profiles and household composition of mortgagers and outright owners, with 41% of moving mortgagors wanting to relocate to a larger house or flat, and 31% of outright owners planning to move to a smaller house or flat.
According to Kate Davies, executive director of the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA), the survey points to a chronic housing supply shortage, contributing to an increasingly illiquid market.
‘Home movers in particular face a number of hurdles including high house prices relative to earnings, stricter mortgage affordability criteria and a lack of suitable homes, holding back housing turnover and transaction volumes,’ she said.
‘The market needs to work for everyone. We look forward to working with the new Housing Minister as he faces the challenge of delivering on the Government’s promises and aspirations for change,’ she added.