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Hope And Caution for First-Time Buyers in 2024


A house key on a keyring with a house charm and red ribbon

First-time buyers (FTBs) in the UK are navigating a dynamic housing market in 2024. Recent news reports offer both encouraging signs and areas for careful consideration. This analysis, drawing insights from the latest market data and expert opinions, equips you with the knowledge and understanding needed to navigate this evolving landscape with confidence. 


Reasons for Optimism


Market Stabilisation


 After a period of decline, average asking prices in February 2024 showed a slight year-on-year increase of 0.1%, marking a potential shift towards stability. Rightmove reports this as the first annual price rise in six months. 


Increased Sales Activity


Agreed sales in the first six weeks of 2024 were 16% higher than the same period last year, exceeding even pre-pandemic levels (3% higher than 2019). This indicates growing market momentum, potentially signalling a positive year for FTBs. 


Mortgage Rate Stability


After recent fluctuations, mortgage rates have stabilised. Managing Director of Prestige, David Jackson, considers this as a positive development, offering greater predictability for buyers planning their finances. 

 

Areas for Cautious Consideration


Price Sensitivity


The market remains price sensitive. Rightmove notes that "budget-conscious buyers" are snapping up accurately priced properties, while overpriced ones struggle to sell. This emphasises the importance of realistic pricing for both buyers and sellers. 


Deposit Challenges


Saving for a deposit remains a significant hurdle for many FTBs. Exploring professional guidance from a qualified, independent mortgage broker can be invaluable in navigating financing options and maximising affordability. 


Evolving Rental Market


The UK rental market is also experiencing a slowdown, with average rents on newly let properties increasing by 8.3% year-on-year in January 2024, marking the slowest growth in 13 months (Hamptons data). While rental growth is expected to remain above inflation for the rest of 2024, understanding these broader market trends can inform your decision-making process. 

 



Navigating the Market as First-Time Buyers with Confidence

Compass pointing to the future

While these recent developments offer a mix of positive and cautious signals, as a first-time buyer, you can approach the market with informed optimism by: 


Conducting thorough research


Stay informed about market trends in your desired area, including asking prices, potential rental yields, and diverse mortgage products available. Our expert advisors will be happy to help you understand your options, however distant your mortgage aspirations seem.  


Setting realistic expectations 


Be mindful of your budget and financial limitations. While compromise might be necessary, prioritise finding a property that aligns with your long-term needs and financial sustainability.  


Seeking expert guidance


Consulting a qualified, independent mortgage broker can be your strongest asset. They can explain different mortgage options, compare exclusive rates, and guide you through the application process, simplifying the complexities and reducing stress. 


Maintaining patience and persistence


Finding the right property takes time. Don't be discouraged by setbacks; stay focused on your goals and continue your search. 

 

Prestige Private Finance: Your Partner in Homeownership 


At Prestige Private Finance, we understand the complexities of navigating the housing market, especially for first-time buyers. We prioritise your financial wellbeing, taking a holistic approach to understand your unique circumstances and aspirations.  


Our team of dedicated mortgage specialists collaborates with you to create a bespoke mortgage package tailored to your specific needs and financial goals. We provide comprehensive guidance throughout the entire process, ensuring a smooth and stress-free journey towards homeownership. 


Ready to embark on your homeownership journey? 

Contact Prestige Private Finance today and let our experienced team empower you to turn your dream of owning a home into reality. 

 

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