Scottish first-time buyer numbers more than double in a decade

The number of first-time buyers in Scotland has grown by more than 50% in a decade, according to research.

Figures from the Bank of Scotland show there were 34,519 in 2018, compared with 22,100 in 2008.

First-time buyers were found to make up around half of all house purchases with a mortgage in Scotland, up from 37% a decade a go.

Ricky Diggins, director at the Bank of Scotland, said: “There has been steady growth of new buyers coming on to the property ladder in Scotland over the last decade, with the proportion of first-time buyers now representing half of the overall market.

“This is important for the wellbeing of the Scottish property market, and has been helped by factors such as continued low mortgage rates.

“With a much lower deposit required north of the border, first-time buyers in Scotland will have to put down a lot less to get the keys to their first home, especially those in East Ayrshire – the UK’s most affordable place for first-time buyers.

“Those looking for their first place in Edinburgh can expect to pay more than double that.”

The average deposit put down by a first-time buyer in Scotland was 15% of the purchase price in 2008, jumping dramatically to 25% in 2009.

In 2018, the average deposit dropped to 14% of the purchase price, although property prices have continued to increase.

The £19,952 average deposit being put down on a first home in Scotland is just over half of the UK-wide average of £33,352.

Two-bedroom properties have been the first-time buyer’s home of choice in Scotland throughout the past decade, making up more than four in 10 mortgages for first homes in 2018.