The number of first-time buyers in Scotland rose to the largest annual total in four years, according to new data released today by the Council of Mortgage Lenders in Scotland.
Their report shows that the number of first time buyers in Scotland entering the housing market reached 19,000 during 2012 the highest in four years. This represents a 13% increase compared to 2011 and is a sign that mortgages for first time buyers are becoming more readily available.
From October to December 2012 5,200 first time buyers bought their first home in Scotland which is a 4% increase compared to the third quarter and up by 18% on the same period in 2011.
First-time buyers also borrowed less relative to their income than in the UK, and spent a smaller proportion of their income on mortgage payments.
First-time buyers in Scotland typically borrowed 2.88 times their income, considerably lower than the 3.26 times borrowed by their counterparts in the UK, and spent 18% of borrowers’ income, compared to 20% in the UK. January 2013 saw some very positive signs for this sector of the market with 15,900 first time buyer mortgages being approved throughout the UK which represents the largest volume recorded in January since 2008. Iain Malloch, chair of CML Scotland, commented: “The Scottish housing market showed positive signs of recovery in 2012, broadly following the pattern seen in the rest of the UK.
“The availability of mortgages at more than 90% loan-to-value has more than doubled in the last two years and lenders expect to offer higher loan-to-value mortgages this year. This, and the fact that the number of first-time buyers is at a post-crunch high, suggests that lenders really are open for business.”
The Edinburgh Market represents good value for this sector
Neilsons are seeing more first time buyers enter the market which is hardly surprising given that the average price of a one bedroom flat in Leith Walk and Easter Road is now £89,326 – a 16.4% fall on the same period last year. By comparison, the average cost of a one bedroom flat in Gorgie/Dalry is £85,161 – a fall of 9.8% year on year.
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