45% of buyers under 40 hit with ‘delayed homeownership’


A study of 5,000 UK adults’ financial experiences also shows 43% of mortgaged homeowners under the age of 40 relied on financial help from family or friends to buy their first home

45% of mortgaged homeowners aged under 40 got onto the housing ladder ‘much later’ than they expected, shows a new research by the Equity Release Council (ERC).

A study of 5,000 UK adults’ financial experiences also shows 43% of mortgaged homeowners under the age of 40 relied on financial help from family or friends to buy their first home. In comparison, just 23% of those aged 40+ relied on similar support to get onto the property ladder.

The rise of ‘delayed homeownership’ means having a mortgage in later life is likely to become more usual for consumers. 32% of homeowners with a mortgage are unsure if they will become ‘mortgage free’ before they retire or have already ruled it out. 20% feel the idea of retiring ‘mortgage free’ is unrealistic.

Instead, the Council’s research highlights attitudes to secured debt in retirement are changing, as nearly one in four mortgaged homeowners (24%) say they don’t mind if they are still paying off their loan in later life. 47% believe their generation’s attitude to debt in later life is more accepting than their parents, with those aged 25-34 most likely to feel this way (52%).

The findings show that 70% of mortgaged homeowners feel comfortable with their current level of mortgage debt, rising to 75% of those aged 50+. Many also feel taking out a mortgage in later life can benefit them: 32% see it as a way to provide money to improve their lifestyles, while 31% see it as a way to access funds to help out family members.

33% feel financial services providers are getting better at offering mortgages to people in retirement. However, the need for clear information is apparent as 36% say they are confused about what mortgages are available to people in later life. The Council’s research suggests confusion is highest among the under-40s (42%).

Jim Boyd, CEO of the Equity Release Council, comments: The realities of delayed homeownership are prompting people to reassess their attitudes to secured debt in later life. There are clear signs that paying a mortgage in retirement is no longer taboo: for many people, it can make the difference between financial hardship and enjoying a more comfortable lifestyle while also supporting family members.

He said: The ability to use property wealth to improve your retirement experience is a choice many homeowners have earned through years of paying a mortgage and building an asset. Lifetime and retirement mortgages allow people to make the most of property as a source of wealth as well as a home. Our findings suggest later life lending products are likely to be even more important for future generations of retired homeowners than they are today.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by our writers are their own and do not represent the views of Getting Money Wise. The information provided on Getting Money Wise is intended for informational purposes only. Getting Money Wise is not liable for any financial losses incurred. Conduct your own research by contacting financial experts before making any investment decisions.

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