Thursday 10th July 2014

House hunters visit eight homes to find the ‘one’

British people believe they need to view eight homes before choosing the right one for them, according to new research by energy provider EON. On the contrary, only 1 in 10 house-hunters (8%) claim they would be happy to purchase the first house they saw.

People tend to know quickly when they’ve discovered the ‘one’, however, with 59% knowing during or immediately after the first viewing of a certain property that it is the perfect fit for them. Meanwhile, 32% think that the process of deciding on the right home will take two to three months.

The survey of 2000-plus adults found that, when it comes to energy efficiency, over three-quarters of first time buyers (76%) say it's very important. The majority of people (85%) also feel that a new build will be the most energy efficient type of property, whilst Edwardian homes would be the least efficient (2%).

As well as this, the findings revealed that location ranks highest overall for those seeking to purchase a property, with 74% of house hunters saying this was the top priority. Location is followed by mortgage costs (56%), size (53%) and the amount of renovation work the property requires (40%).

Beverley Maguire, an energy efficiency expert at E.ON, said of the results: "Home hunters feel confident they can judge what's out there once they've seen an average of eight properties, and most people identified new builds as being most energy efficient - but older properties can be efficient too.”

She added: "Before making a decision, buyers should make sure they know about the condition of the property's heating system and whether it's well insulated. Energy suppliers can help with free or discounted insulation and boiler replacements for people who qualify.”

In the current uncertain economic climate, with wages going down as cost of living goes up, it’s perhaps not surprising that 67% of people feel the best thing about owning a property is the long-term investment potential of their asset.

Additionally, 65% like the security of knowing you won’t have to move unless you want to, whilst 59% said not having a landlord to answer to is the best thing about being a home owner. Freedom over how to decorate (59%) and being able to get a pet (25%) were also given as positive reasons to purchase.

The research also found that 62% of people decide they'd like to buy their first home in their twenties, with a go-getting 29% setting their minds on being home owners by the age of nineteen. In reality, though, the prospects of purchasing are not so rosy, with over half (53%) of non-home owning adults across Britain fearing that they'll never make it on the property ladder. They cite lack of capital (66%), ignorance about the property market (19%), and eagerness to avoid getting financially tied down (13%) as the top barriers to purchase.

With property prices still on the rise, and renting becoming more and more popular (not to mention necessary), there’s no evidence to suggest getting on the property ladder will get any easier in the near future.