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First time buyers in Camden face a 22-year wait to get on housing ladder

PUBLISHED: 17:14 26 February 2015

First time buyers in Camden face a wait of up to 22 years to save for a deposit

First time buyers in Camden face a wait of up to 22 years to save for a deposit

PA Wire/Press Association Images

The average earner in Camden must save for 22 years in order to afford a deposit for their first home, the fourth longest wait in London, according to research commissioned by Labour MP and London mayoral hopeful Tessa Jowell.

The figures from House of Commons Library analysis are based on the assumption that an individual working full time saves seven per cent of their gross earnings.

According to the research, a ten per cent deposit on the average property in Camden is £58,500 meaning that someone on the average full-time salary of £37,000 would take 22.3 years to save up. The average wait across England is 13 years.

Dame Tessa said: “This is the hard truth about how London’s housing crisis denies the dream of owning your own home to young people in north London. Across Camden, Haringey and Westminster first time buyers are finding saving for a deposit almost impossible.

“We need to build one London not two where everyone has the chance to live in a decent home and first time buyers aren’t excluded from the housing market unless they have access to the bank of mum and dad.

“First things first - the next Mayor has to build many more homes, plain and simple, but we also have to develop a serious plan to help thousands more Londoners get on the housing ladder.”

Guy Russell head of residential at Salter Rex also attributes the high prices of property in Camden to lack of supply.

Mr Russell said: “It’s a very small market. If you’re looking in Kentish Town, in terms of genuine properties that are actually for sale there might only be 10 things in each price range.

“Last year when we were advertising properties for sale we got up to 100 requests for viewings for each property. Demand’s slipped a bit this year but we’re still getting about half that number for each property.

“Whilst that remains the case then competition will be very strong and there’s not a restriction on new buyers coming to the market place because the population keeps growing.”

Mr Russell said that poor pension performance was partly responsible for this as people are building wealth and future income through owning property, further restricting supply.

He also pointed out that tenants in Camden would struggle to save money because of the high cost of renting in the borough. At the same time, most first time buyers need a deposit of at least 20 per cent in order to secure a mortgage.

Mr Russell said: “Some buyers are being given or lent a deposit by better off parents or inheriting from grandparents.

“Ultimately anyone hoping to save for a deposit themselves is going to be at a disadvantage.”

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