For the first time since 1995, first-time buyers make up more than 50% of the property market, with 372,000 people buying their first home in 2018, according to new data from Halifax.
However, the average age of a first-time buyer has increased to 31 - two years older than 10 years ago - and in London it's 33.
While the average UK property price for a first home has increased a lot in the past 10 years - up 39% since 2008 - first-time buyers are putting down similarly-sized deposits. This means they're buying homes at higher loan-to-value ratios, often resulting in higher rates.
Which? looks into where people are putting down the highest and lowest deposits, and explains other property buying costs you'll need to consider.
In 2018, the average UK deposit was £32,841 - around 15% of the average property price, Halifax found.
are paying the lowestas a percentage of the purchase price in East Northamptonshire (£19,871) and South Tyneside (£13,778), where these sums make up 11% of the average home value. This may be due to the average property being fairly cheap, at £182,698 in East Northamptonshire and £120,826 in South Tyneside, so that buyers can afford to borrow up to 90% of its value.
By comparison, buyers in Camden, in north-west London, are putting down the highest percentage deposits, with the average first-timer paying a 30% deposit of £194,373.
Why such a high deposit? The average cost of a home in Camden is a hefty £642,962. Even with higher-than-average London salaries, it's likely first-time buyers may struggle to borrow more than 70% of the property price - at 4.5x your salary, you'd still need an annual income of £99,687. So saving up a larger deposit may be their only option.
The size of average deposits might surprise you, especially if you'd been planning on getting a 95% LTV mortgage with a 5% deposit.We whether saving more - getting a 15% deposit, rather than 10% - would open the door to better rates.
Prices in the area you're hoping to buy will determine how large of a deposit you need - and your earnings may influence how quickly you can save it up.
Taking into account the house price to average earnings ratio, Pendle in the North West comes out as the most affordable area UK-wide, the Halifax report found. First-time buyers typically pay a 15% deposit of £13,224 and the average first-time buyer house price is just 2.6x the average salary. Indeed to get a 75% mortgage at 4.5x your salary, you'll need an income of £16,806.
All 10 of the most affordable local authority districts are in the North West of England and Scotland. Other areas include Copeland, East Ayrshire, Inverclyde, South Ayrshrie, Barrow-in-Furness, Hyndburn, West Dunbartonshire, West Lancashire and South Lanarkshire.
By contrast, in the London borough of Brent, the average property is 13.3x the average salary. Here, first-time buyers are scraping together a 26% deposit of £129,210 for a property costing £500,088, on average. To secure a 75% LTV mortgage, you'd still need to earn £82,418.
Brent is one of nine London boroughs in the 10 least affordable local authority districts in the UK, joined by Hackney, Newham, Hillingdon, Waltham Forest, Southwark, Haringey, Barnet and Harrow. Oxford is the only area outside of London on the list.
While your mortgage deposit is a huge part of getting on the property ladder, there are many other factors you'll need to plan for.
It's a long list, which can add on several thousands of pounds to your overall house-buying bill. So, make sure you're prepared beforehand - it might mean waiting and saving up for a few extra months before starting the process of buying your first home.
There are several government-backed schemes that are designed to help first-time buyers get on the property ladder.
Before choosing a lender, you should consider what type of mortgage is best-suited to your circumstances. There are three main types: