Property news roundup: Drop in cost of renting compared to buying
Plus, thirtysomething homeownership, renting and cleaning, and mortgage hunters are getting younger
Alex Johnson has been part of The Independent's online team since 2007. He has been writing about microarchitecture on his internationally-acclaimed Shedworking blog since 2006 and is the author of Shedworking: The Alternative Workplace Revolution. His latest book is Bookshelf, published by Thames & Hudson.
Tuesday 13 May 2014
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 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."
A three-bedroom villa with self-contained flat, minutes from Lake Windermere
A deceptively spacious, beautifully presented Georgian home with 3000sq ft of living space and five reception rooms
A five-bedroom Victorian home with four receptions, superb gardens and paddock in Pembury
An eight-bedroom house on the south side of the The Green with cinema, wine cellars and summer house
This 17th century beauty is full of rustic cosiness, while the detached home office means you can also run a business
This five-bedroom red-brick beauty overlooks the village green and sits in just under two acres of land
Four exclusive apartments in a Grade II-listed former medical school with 2,275 sq ft of living space and 18ft ceilings
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
A three-bedroom, 15th-century cottage with original features in the picturesque village of Sissinghurst
A six-bedroom terraced house with large south-facing roof terrace, cinema room and wine cellar
A new seven-bedroom home built in Queen Anne-style with swimming pool and parkland views in Mortimer
A listed, four-bedroom farmhouse in the rural hamlet of Rushall with detached barn, four acres of gardens and paddocks
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
Life & Style blogs
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Germany sees 'visible rise' in support for far-right extremism in response to perceived 'Islamisation' of the West
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
£20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...
£28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a major supplier of buil...
£28000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...