Fewer Three-Bed Semis Available as Help to Buy Grows

Fewer Three-Bed Semis Available as Help to Buy Grows

The influence of the government?s Help to Buy scheme is one of the reasons behind the recent shortfall in three-bedroom semi-detached properties across the country. Through the scheme, more first-time buyers are able to jump up the property ladder, missing out the traditional starter home.

The Help to Buy Factor

Help to Buy was introduced a year ago and was intended to give a boost to the property market, which had struggled during the recession. With the help of the scheme, buyers can now secure a property with as little as a 5% deposit. However, for many people searching for a new home, the scheme has led to a decline in the number of semi-detached properties on the market, particularly those with three bedrooms.

One of the factors behind this shortfall is that in the past first-time buyers would start off by owning a flat or small house. However, as the average age people purchase their first home has increased, so have their expectations. They are often in a stable relationship and considering children, dinner parties and the best wrought iron balcony designs to have. Therefore they?re opting to move straight into a family home with more space.

This desire for a bigger first home has also been aided by Help to Buy. Buyers now need a smaller deposit to secure their home, so they can afford a more expensive property. With interest rates still low, this is encouraging more of them to take a bigger first step on to the ladder.

Agents Reporting a Shortfall

The data comes from a group of independent estate agents ? Move with Us. They report that 49% of their branches have a shortage of three-bed semis and 57% of them don?t have enough of these properties for those who are looking to buy. This shortfall in semis has meant that they are now selling considerably faster than the average property. Overall, they secure a deal in 71 days, whereas the average for all properties is 126 days. In Ashtead in Surrey, a three-bedroom semi is selling in only 6.5 days on average.

These properties are now the most popular choice for many buyers. In the survey of their estate agents, Move with Us reported that in 66% of their branches it was the most common request from buyers.

If you?re currently looking for a three-bedroom semi, it might be worthwhile speaking directly to agents. Then they will know what you?re looking for and can tell you when a new property comes on to the market.