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Property Natter - Oh brother, where art thou?

I sometimes wonder just how far our national obsession with buying our own homes will stretch.

First-time buyers are prepared to save for years for their ever-more elusive deposits, some are willing to sign up for 40-year mortgages and now they are making their house purchase a family affair.

The Bank of Mum and Dad has been relied on for a number of years as a source of significant financial help but now I see that brothers and sisters have been roped in to help lift their siblings onto the first rung of the property ladder.


And it appears to be a growing trend. Forget sibling rivalry, this is sibling chivalry… above and beyond the call of duty.

According to Hamptons, who used data from Skipton Building Society, brothers and sisters made up 11% of family members contributing to first-time buyer deposits – more than double the share recorded five years ago and overshadowing grandparent contributions for the first time ever.

More research, this time from Legal and General and the Centre for Economics and Business Research shows that this year, record numbers of FTBs are set to make a withdrawal from the Family Bank this year – expected to help fund 318,400 transactions in 2023.

Never mind ‘blood is thicker than water’- it’s thicker than bricks and mortar, too.

Jonny come lately

Remember that drop goal? It’s hard to believe, I know, but it’s 20 years since Jonny Wilkinson scored the winning points to secure the Rugby World Cup for England with just 26 seconds of the final left to play. It was Boys’ Own stuff and sad to say, with this year’s tournament just around the corner, the England side don’t look likely to scale those heights this time around (although you never can tell).

I wasn’t going to bring it up but Simon Jackson, managing director of SDL Surveying, makes the very same point in an article in this publication today.

He draws an incisive parallel between England Rugby’s chances and the performance of our housing market which, despite media reports at the beginning of the year, has shown remarkable resilience in the face of multiple pressures.

Despite the many media reports earlier this year of a projected slump in the housing market, sales have remained strong and demand has shown incredible resilience in the face of a cost of living crisis and rising interest rates.

Jackson writes: “Much like the realm of sports, housing is another area where it is crucial to not over-analyse and try to pre-empt events before they have unfolded.”

He believes FTBs will again dominate the purchasing landscape as the year progresses as lenders look to bring higher LTV products to market. If inflation continues to ease and interest rates settle to more manageable levels, it seems more than possible that what Simon Says is more than possible. Come on, England!

Trust me, I’m an estate agent

Huge congratulations this week to sales and lettings agency, Living in London, who announced this week they’d scooped their second award of the year.

Judges at BUILD Magazine’s Real Estate and Property Awards selected them as winners of London’s Most Trusted Property Letting and Sales Company of the year.

I remember when polls showed that agents, along with journalists and politicians, didn’t do so well in the trustworthy stakes. Hopefully, times they are a’changing.

Only Connect

And finally….a reminder that Europe’s largest PropTech event, PropTech Connect, opens in London next week at the O2.

The two-day event begins on Wednesday the 6th and organisers are promising a ‘revolutionary conference experience designed to act as a catalyst for industry change.’

Sounds right up my street.

More details here.

Until next time…


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