Property news roundup: Drop in cost of renting compared to buying

Plus, thirtysomething homeownership, renting and cleaning, and mortgage hunters are getting younger

Rising house prices mean that the cost of renting relative to buying has fallen, according to Countrywide Residential Lettings.

Its figures suggest that in 2014, the average tenant pays 93p in rent for every £1 spent on mortgage repayments by a homeowner able to put down a 10% deposit. This is a decrease of 3p from 96p a year ago.

The report shows that house prices rose more quickly than rents over the past 12 months across 87 per cent of England, Scotland and Wales.

The 13 per cent of areas where the cost of renting rose relative to buying were almost all in South Wales and the North East of England. 

Iin London the average tenant spends 86p on rent, down from 93p a year ago, for every £1 a homeowner spent on a mortgage. It is now cheaper to rent than buy in 30 out of the 33 London boroughs, up from 25 in 2013.

Nick Dunning, Group Commercial Director, Countrywide plc, said: "Home ownership has long been part of the British psyche. However, for many households, particularly in the short to medium term, home ownership doesn’t always make sense financially or otherwise.

"As house prices rise, renting increasingly allows people to live in areas they would otherwise be unable to afford to buy. In more expensive cities, such as London, the cost of renting in more central areas can be just half the cost of buying. The result is that in the most central areas of London, and many other global cities, over half the population now rent.

"While homeowners can benefit from increases to the value of their home over the long term, homeownership itself doesn’t automatically equate to large financial returns. The money saved by renting can be invested in other ways. The reality is that tenants, far from being priced out of the market in the long term, have benefitted from the flexibility this growing and increasingly professional sector offers."

Drop in average age of mortgage hunters

The average age of buyers seeking a mortgage during April dipped below 37 (to 36.9) for the first time since September 2010.

The figures from the Mortgage Advice Bureau come a fortnight after the introduction of  the Mortgage Market Review (MMR).

Remortgage application numbers dropped by 12 per cent in April, while purchase applications fell by seven per cent. However, the numbers of both were still 29 per cent higher than in April 2013.

Cleaning problems

Cleaning is the main cause of disputes between tenants and landlords and the problem is getting worse, according to the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks. 

The annual review by the Tenancy Deposit Scheme shows that the most common cause of complaint is about cleaning, increasing from 49 per cent in 2009 to 56 per cent in 2013, the highest level since 2007.

"The main problems are dirty ovens and fridges, stains and marks on carpeting and flooring, bathrooms which have not been cleaned for months, and pet hair and excrement on floors, furniture and soft furnishings," said Pat Barber, Chair of the Association of the AIIC.

Homes and the under-35s

Analysis by Lucian Cook at Savills shows that those aged under 35 are having a tough time finding a home.

His figures indicated that in three quarters of local authorities, first time buyers have to earn above the average full time income for the area to afford to buy, while in a quarter of areas they need to earn at least 50 per cent above that figure.

In addition to London, he points to affordability issues in the more expensive towns of the Midlands and the North, including Stratford upon Avon and York, and Maidstone and Exeter in the South.

Overall, his analysis suggests that first time buyers now need an income of more than£50,000 to buy in Cambridge, Chichester, Guildford, Horsham, Oxford, Winchester and Woking, and more than £40,000 to buy in Basingstoke, Canterbury, Lewes, Reading and Slough.

"Younger households will undoubtedly rent for longer and enter the housing market later in life, possibly when they can pool two incomes or for the lucky ones, take advantage of the housing equity built up by parents and grandparents," he said. "As a result, government policy needs to become less fixated on home ownership and look to substantially increase the supply of good quality rental accommodation."

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: You will also work alongside their seasoned sa...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Property Manager

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you looking for your first step into...

Recruitment Genius: Mechanical Design Engineer

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This innovative company working...

Recruitment Genius: Car Sales Executive - OTE £36,000

£12500 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This established Wakefield Deal...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat