American buyers are back on our radar for the first time in several years. Accounting for 7% of buyers in the first six months of this year, their presence is clearly motivated by the strength of the pound against the dollar. The long term average for Americans (2015-2022) was just 2% of sales.
There has been a dramatic change in the age structure of our buyers this year. Whether it will endure for the long term we cannot say, but so far this year almost 30% of our buyers have been aged under 30, compared with an average of 19% between 2015 and 2022. This is in line with first time buyers moving from long term rental.
Buy to let investors have virtually disappeared from our markets, compared to a long term average of 17%. On the other hand, there is a significant increase in the proportion of parents buying for children – up from a long term average of 8% to 14% so far this year.
First time buyers are in line with the long term average, accounting for about one fifth of purchases, as were owner occupiers at around half of all purchases.
There was more mortgage debt behind this year’s purchasers than has been the average for the period 2015-2022. The proportion buying with 100% cash buyers was 29%, down from a long term average of 34%.
The most common category by far was of people using cash to fund between half and three quarters of the cost of the purchase and borrowing the remainder. They made up 43% of all buyers.