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Property woes: Home buying ranked top concern for young

Which? research reveals consumers' policy priorities

Buying a home is the most pressing consumer concern among young people in the UK, according to new Which? research.

In a April 2017 survey, almost half (49%) of 18 to 34-year olds listed the home-buying process as one of the top three consumer concerns that the government should prioritise.

Among this age group, other worries included social care for older people (46%) and energy prices (34%).

For adults of all ages, three in 10 (28%) cite home buying and selling as a top three priority for the next government, rising to four in 10 (42%) for those living in London.

Find out more: Which? First Time Buyers Guide – learn the ins and outs of buying property

Which? calls for government action

Further Which? research has shown that three in 10 (28%) house purchases fall through, leading to an average loss to the potential buyer of £2,200. Which? data also found it can take an average of four to five months to complete a property purchase.

As part of its Consumer Agenda for Government, Which? has called on the next government to conduct a thorough review of the home-buying process to make the system easier, particularly for buyers. The review should also examine the role played by industry professionals such as estate agents and conveyancers.

Which? has urged all political parties to set out how they intend to improve the home-buying process for consumers in their manifestos. Parties should commit to ensuring that estate agents deliver a better service for both home-buyers and sellers, and that the conveyancing process is simplified.

Alex Neill, Which? managing director of home products and services, said: ‘Buying a home is one of the most significant purchases consumers ever make and one of the most stressful life experiences.

‘It takes people far too long to buy property and home-buyers are losing out on substantial amounts of money due to flaws in the system. The next government must fix the outdated home-buying process.’

 

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