“Last Time Buyer” market (LTBs) worth £820 billion, including 7.7 million spare bedrooms, says new research from Legal & General and Cebr

A new research study released today by Legal & General, the FTSE100 financial services group, and Cebr, the economics consultancy, has quantified the size and shape of the UK’s “Last Time Buyer” (LTB) market for the first time, and in doing so has identified 5.3million under-occupied homes in the UK, with 3.3million LTBs looking to downsize. The LTB market owns 7.7million spare bedrooms and a total of £820 billion of housing wealth, set to reach £1.2 trillion in 2020.

Key figures from Legal & General’s study of “Last Time Buyers” (LTBs) include:

  • 5.3 million under-occupied homes
  • 3.3 million LTBs looking to downsize
  • 7.7 million spare bedrooms
  • 820 billion LTB housing wealth, reaching £1.2 trillion in 2020
  • Typical LTB lives in a 4-bed house, but wants a 2-bed property
  • Almost a third of older homeowners considered downsizing in the last five years; only 7% actually did
  • A majority (58%) put it off until after 70; a quarter until 80 or older.

Stephen Smith, Director, Mortgage Club & Housing at Legal & General, said:

“We currently have a housing crisis in the UK and there is a chronic shortage of appropriate properties to meet this huge demand. Government policy is focused on schemes to build more homes for first-time buyers and to help people get onto the property ladder. Initiatives like Help to Buy which encourage the building of more homes are always very welcome. However, at present, the LTB market is being hugely overlooked and as our figures show it could help to solve the UK housing crisis.”

Smith continues:

“We need to make it easier for older people to even consider moving by relieving the onerous burden of stamp duty, creating better options for equity release and providing real alternatives for older people in terms of the types of home that they can live in and the infrastructure that surrounds them. If we are able to get that right we will help older people in the UK move to homes which better fit their lifestyles and their needs and at the same time unlock large swathes of valuable housing stock for growing families.”

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