First-time buyers at highest since 2007
The number of first-time buyers last year, shot up to the highest level since 2007.
Halifax commented that there were 326,500 first-time buyers in 2014. This was up a staggering 22% on the year before. In 2007, there were 359,000 first-time buyers. The following year when the market crashed, there were just 192,300.
During 2014, first-time buyers accounted for 46% of all home purchasers who bought with a mortgage, which is up from 44% in 2013.
The drivers for this change were relatively and consistently cheap mortgage rates, the Help to Buy government scheme which requires deposits from as low as 5% and of course the stamp duty reforms which came in at the end of the year.
Undoubtedly improving economic conditions and rising employment levels have also boosted confidence in those thinking about getting on to the housing ladder.
It will be interesting to see in to 2015, how the effects of the new stamp duty reforms will potentially increase transaction levels below £1m, but may hinder those properties trying to sell above this level.