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Staying put: the number of people moving home has fallen 2 per cent this year

PUBLISHED: 11:32 21 August 2017

2 per cent less people have moved home this year as Brexit bites and tax changes mean Hampstead homemovers move just once every 18 years

2 per cent less people have moved home this year as Brexit bites and tax changes mean Hampstead homemovers move just once every 18 years

© Getty Images

Homemovers stay put as supply falls and prices rise, with the average Hampstead homeowner moving just once every 18 years

The number of people moving home has declined by 2 per cent in the first six months of 2017 compared to the same period last year. 171,300 people moved house in the months to June, whereas 18,000 more people moved in the first half of 2016.

Although the figures for 2016 may be skewed thanks to the uptick in people rushing to beat stamp duty changes, the activity levels of second steppers have reduced from almost two thirds a decade ago (64 per cent) to just over a half (51 per cent) of all moves financed by a mortgage. Current homemover numbers are less than half (48 per cent) of what they were prior to the 2007 financial crash.

That could have something to do with the enormous increase in the increase in the cost of moving home. Movers now spend on average £85,000 more than they did five years ago when purchasing a home, an increase of 41 per cent.

In Camden, the average price of a home has reached £833,581 according to the official house price index released last week by the Office for National Statistics. Typical first time buyer, two bedroom flats come in at £755,185 according to Zoopla, whilst a terraced home will cost over £1 million.

Despite fears of a crash, house prices have risen 8 per cent across the borough since the vote to leave the EU. According to blogger and agent Chris Christodoulou of the NW3 property blog, flats in Hampstead cost £332,203 in 2000, but have risen an enormous 250 per cent, now averaging £1,015,079.

With the pressures of rising costs, Stamp Duty changes and a lack of supply, Hampstead homeowners move just once every 18 years.

As for that first purchase, the average price of a house in London now well over half a million pounds at £561,032. That’s £20,000 more expensive than in 2016, and £201,353 more than in 2012. Over five years, annual house prices in London have increased 56 per cent.

That leaves the average deposit payable in London at a staggering £188,916, 55 per cent higher than five years ago at 34 per cent of the purchase price. Despite this, with homeowners staying put, first time buyers are taking advantage of favourable mortgage rates and low interest rates to increase their numbers to 162,704, an increase of 3 per cent annually.

Andrew Mason, Lloyds Bank mortgage products director, said: “In the past year, the number of homemovers appears to have stabilised despite continuing low interest rates and rising employment. There are a number of factors which could be influencing this, more people are paying off their mortgages and not moving, with supply at historic low levels there could be a shortage of suitable homes coming on the market and the cost of moving house could be putting people off.

“This has meant that homemovers now account for just half of today’s housing market compared to a decade ago when it accounted for two-thirds of the market. This has a knock on affect for first time buyers as there will be fewer properties available for them also.”

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