A quarter of first time home owners looking to move up the property ladder, so called second steppers are finding it harder than buying their first home, new research has found.
The number in this position us up by 18% and 35% say they will delay having children or have fewer children than they originally planned due to the challenges involved in finding a bigger home.
The research from Lloyds Bank also found that 56% have found it is taking longer than expected to buy their next home due to low savings rates and 13% have had to change jobs to do so.
An increase in moving costs, rising stamp duty and difficulty in finding the right property has meant that 52% of those still living in their first home said that they had planned on moving up the property ladder in the last 12 months but have been unable to do so.
Low savings rates have also been a contributing factor and second steppers say that it’s taken longer for them to save enough to take the next step. However, there are also challenges on the demand side, as 39% report that that it’s harder to sell their current property now compared to 12 months ago.
However, the rise in house prices seems to have had a positive impact on the situation, given that this population have typically been more exposed to negative equity in a downward market. Some 39% of second steppers said that the rise in house prices will help them to sell their current property for the right price.
In the event of being unable to sell their current property only 9% said they would consider lowering their asking price to attract interest. Some 51% are willing to remain in their current property to wait until conditions allow a move, 27% would consider making improvements to their current home and 21% would look to rent their property instead and still move.
‘Moving up the property ladder has become more challenging for second steppers in recent years. The rise in house prices and moving costs, along with how difficult it is to find the right property means that they’ve had to wait longer than anticipated or even put off their move entirely until the right property comes along,’ said Andrew Mason, mortgage product director at Lloyds Bank.
‘Second steppers seem to be very clear on what they want from their next property and will stay put and improve their current home rather than make any sacrifices. Our research also shows that most homeowners think ahead and understand that it could take up to four moves in total to reach their dream home,’ he added.
The research also revealed that the ideal home for a second stepper is a detached four bedroom house with a garage, driveway and kitchen/diner and 28% said that they wouldn’t be willing to sacrifice anything from their must have list of features in order to make it easier to find their next home.
Ideally 35% said they would like to buy a three bedroom period property while 34% would opt for the same size new build home with 64% saying their current home is too small and 11% wanted more garden space.
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