Young Scots believe buying property is good financial investment

Over half (51%) of Scottish 20-45 year olds believe that Britain should remain a nation of homeowners, with an overwhelming 77% agreeing that buying a property is a good financial investment, according to the latest research from Bank of Scotland, in partnership with NatCen Social Research.

However, despite this, of the 737 young Scots questioned: Two in five (39%) would like to buy a home but do not believe they will ever be able to; just 29% have a serious intention to buy within the next five years; 45% believe Britain will become a nation of renters within a generation.

The size of a deposit (37%), high house prices (15%) and low income (13%) are the top three barriers to home ownership in Scotland according to the research. In addition, nine out of ten (89%) 20-45 year olds in Scotland fear that it is a risk to buy a home in today’s economy.

Whilst the average FTB deposit in today’s Scottish market stands at £21,442[i], the research found that: 21% of young Scots have savings of less than £3,000 and 31% have no savings at all; On average, people aged between 20 and 45 who have savings have an average of £8,820

However, 77% admitted to spending money they could otherwise be saving for a deposit. A third (33%) believe the money spent buying things for their current home could be put towards a deposit instead, followed by clothing (32%), eating out (30%), and holidays (27%).

Eliminating stamp duty for first time buyers (34%) and the UK Government’s NewBuy scheme (34%) are cited as the policies which are most likely to encourage Scottish 20-45 year olds onto the property ladder.

Notably, a quarter of today’s generation (25%) lived with their parents for longer in order to save for a deposit, whilst a sixth (16%) of 20-45 year olds relied on money borrowed from friends and family to get on the property ladder compared to just 4% of their parents’ generation. However, a third stuck to more traditional methods by simply cutting back on nights out.

Laurence Mann, head of mortgages, Bank of Scotland said: “Young people in Scotland are still downbeat about their chances of owning a home, and many now see a future on the rental market as a more likely outcome than home ownership.

“Saving for a deposit remains a key barrier for many would-be first-time buyers, and this research indicates that a large number are turning to their family for support in way of a loan, or by providing a temporary roof over their heads.”