New report from Legal & General reveals
Last Time Buyers now own £938bn of UK housing stock and will reach the £1 trillion mark this year, according to new research released today by Legal & General, the FTSE 100 financial services group, and CEBR, the economics consultancy.
According to Legal & General’s research, there are now 3.1 million Last Time Buyer households in the UK, with the number of homeowners who have considered downsizing rising from 32% to 39% in the past three years, demonstrating the demand for better later living options for over 55s. Last Time Buyers make up over a quarter (26%) of all UK households over the age of 55.
The UK has a chronic undersupply of age-specific properties, with only 7,000 homes delivered to this sector last year making it the most under-supplied area of the housing market. Legal & General’s research shows that of the Last Time Buyers who had considered downsizing in the last five years but didn’t, 49% said it was because there were no suitable properties available, with a further 29% stating that the properties that were suitable were too expensive.
Phil Bayliss, Head of Later Living at Legal & General, said: “Last Time Buyers account for more than a quarter of the total number of households aged over 55. This report highlights the crucial role they could play in unlocking the wider UK housing market, further demonstrating the need for Government to recognise this sector through key policy changes. If rightsizers were able to move to a property more aligned to their desired lifestyle and needs, vast swathes of homes would be freed up for growing families and second steppers. This, when matched by the huge health benefits proven to come from age appropriate housing, such as a 50% reduction in GP visits and 40% reduction in NHS spend, means that increasing the number of properties available to these buyers is the most efficient way to help solve the UK’s housing crisis and spiralling NHS costs linked to our ageing population.”