The number of first time buyers is estimated to have totalled 310,000 in 2015, virtually unchanged over the past year despite the average price of a first-time home having risen 10 per cent.
The Halifax says the 310,000 figure for 2015 was a tiny 0.5 per cent below the 2014 level of 311,700 - it roughly retains the same dramatic growth from the 2011 figure of 193,700.
The small decline in first-time buyers is in line with general residential house purchases and is partly due to lack of supply says the Halifax.
The average price of a property purchased by first time buyers increased by 10 per cent in 2015 from £172,563 to £190,180. The average deposit paid by a first timer rose by 13 per cent.
FTBs accounted for 46 per cent of all house purchases made with a mortgage in 2015, the same as in 2014. This share has grown from 36 per cent at the start of the housing downturn in 2007.
The Halifax says that based on the average price paid by first time buyers, most regions have benefited from the stamp duty changes announced in December 2014.
The largest saving is made by first-time buyers in London with someone buying at the average first time buyer price of £367,990 now paying £8,399 in stamp duty fees compared to £11,039 before the change – a difference of £2,640.
Buyers in most of the northern regions, as well as those in Scotland, are making substantial savings of over £1,000. With an average house price below the lower threshold of £125,000, typical first-time buyers in the North, Wales and Northern Ireland still pay no stamp duty.