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Over-50 year old first time buyers show significant increase

There were 12,000 first time buyers over the age of 50 in the UK in 2022, the latest figures available.

This means that the number of first time homeowners over the age of 50 has increased by 30 per cent over the past five years, making it one of the fastest growing segments of the first time buyer market - and it comes at a time that home ownership in the UK has declined as a result of reduced housing affordability.

Based on current trends by 2030, a quarter of first time buyers will be aged over 40 with one in 20 aged over 50.

These figures come from mortgage broker Tembo, analysing the Financial Conduct Authority’s Product Sales Data.


This indicates that the number of younger FTBs, particularly those aged under 30, is in decline while the number of older first time buyers aged over 40 has been growing by over seven per cent each year since 2018.

The overall number of first time buyers has grown by around one per cent on average each year since 2018, with 360,000 in total in 2022.  However, it is taking longer than ever to save sufficient funds for a housing deposit and for FTBs to have sufficient income to afford to buy a home. 

There is a significant regional variation in the proportion of first time buyers aged over 50 in the UK.  

London has the lowest proportion - despite its high house prices - with 2.4 per cent of FTBs aged over 50. The South West has the highest proportion, with 3.5 per cent of FTBs aged over 50 - that’s 44 per cent more than in London. Although London currently has the lowest proportion of over 50s first time buyers, it is the fastest growing region. 

In Scotland and the West Midlands, total FTB numbers have declined from 2018 to 2022. However, despite this overall decline the number of FTB’s over the age of 50 has sharply increased in these regions - eight per cent in Scotland and 22 per cent in the West Midlands. 

Based on these recent growth trends, Tembo has developed a projection for first-time buyers by age in 2030. 

Assuming total FTB numbers remain broadly flat at the five year annual average total of 360,000, by 2030 there will be 89,000 FTBs aged over 40. This equates to one in four of all first time buyers.  For FTBs aged over 50, it is forecast that the number will increase from 12,000 in 2022 to 19,000 by 2030, equating to five per cent of total first time buyers.

Tembo chief executive Richard Dana says:A perfect storm of factors impacting first time buyer affordability means we’re now seeing a sharp rise in the number of people waiting until they’re aged 50 or over before they buy their first home. This is presenting a challenge to both the financial services industry and would-be home buyers, with many traditional high-street lenders not offering extended mortgage loan terms beyond the age of 75.” 


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