Estate agents have reported that the number of sales to first time buyers fell to its lowest level in nearly three years during October.
According to the National Association of Estate Agents’ (NAEA) market report for October, only 16% of overall sales made last month went to the first time buyer market, compared with 22% in September.
This is the biggest fall recorded by the NAEA in nearly three years – December 2008 was the last time agents reported such a decrease, when first time buyers made up just 10% of the market share.
The number of house hunters registering at branches across the country also decreased slightly, with 305 per branch in October compared with 308 in September.
The NAEA also reported that overall sales remained consistent across the property market in October, with an average of eight per branch. Meanwhile, supply levels remained in-line with figures in September, with 72 houses available.
Wendy Evans-Scott, NAEA president, said: “This week’s housing strategy announcement from the government is welcome news for first time buyers. But our latest figures show that despite reported increases in mortgage approvals by the larger UK banks over the course of 2011