There seems to be an increasing trend for people to be doing things later in life at the moment. Recent research shows that the average woman is now 33 when she gets married.
Without help from their parents, people cannot afford to buy their first home until they are in their late 30s or early 40s either, according to the National Housing Federation.
But it is not just age that is increasing. Latest figures show that Britain had the biggest absolute increase in population of any EU country, in the 12 months up to June 2012.
While the price paid by first-time buyers for homes in the UK, in May of this year, rose by a staggering 4.1%. It is easy to see then, why Buy to Let lending has also seen a recent dramatic increase, reaching a five-year high this month. This is expected to increase further after the Bank of England’s new governor, Mark Carney, indicated last week that interest rates will remain low for several years yet.
Savers are being driven back towards buying property, which promises to give a better return than cash investments.
According to Geoff Knappett, at Newbury Building Society, it is a self-perpetuating circle.
There are currently more people in the market, which means the price of houses goes up. But if the price goes up, first-time buyers are priced out of the market and are more likely to need to rent properties.
He answered people who question whether lenders have a responsibility to control the market in some way by adding:
The reality is that lenders are businesses and if there is a demand for it, then they have to meet that demand. There is not a right answer to it, but it is a good debating point.
He also says that there does appear to be interest in owning their own home among first-time buyers. A number of information events run by Newbury Building Society for first-time buyers have been incredibly well attended, although there is still a misplaced perception that buyers need to save up huge deposits to get on the property ladder.
This is no longer case as there are high loan to value products and schemes available for people with low deposits. But while savers continue to view houses as a way of achieving a better return on their cash, it seems the biggest increase will still be in buy to let lending.