New Homes

Calls to put house buying on the school timetable

published by

Fran Puddefoot

It is one of the most important financial decisions most of us will ever make, yet the majority of us step onto the housing ladder in complete ignorance. 


Recently, two pieces of research have concluded that the process of house buying should be taught in secondary schools to make us all more savvy. 


A survey commissioned by the housing support website Stipendium showed that 66 per cent of those who had purchased a home in the last six months were unaware of how the actual process worked with almost three quarters backing calls for lessons to be introduced to the school timetable. 


Christina Melling, CEO of Stipendium, said: “Buying a house can be an incredibly daunting task, especially for first-time buyers, and it says a lot that so many existing homebuyers are still in the dark about the process despite having done it before.


“While it may seem a lifetime between being at school and buying your first home, it’s a huge event and one that would be time well spent educating children about. 


“As it stands, we remain at the mercy of the industry professionals that facilitate our purchases and while they do a great job, it’s impossible for them to educate every single buyer at every step of the property purchasing timeline.”


Further research by housing provider SO Resi has also concluded that there is a crucial need for greater education on housing options, particularly for young people.


From the 2,000 18–30-year-olds who were surveyed by phone across the UK, 70 per cent of respondents said they would prefer to own their own home – yet despite significant interest, two-thirds said they knew nothing about the process of buying.


Kush Rawal, director of residential investment at SO Resi, said: “What this research has uncovered is that young people are heavily relying on their parents or grandparents for information about homeownership. For an older generation, buying a house meant paying a deposit and securing a mortgage.


“The housing market has changed beyond recognition in the last 40 years and young people need to be able to access reliable information about all tenures of homeownership.”


“As an industry we must take action now to ensure that we take a proactive approach to delivering education on the subject of homeownership, whatever their future housing tenure may be. If we don’t, a whole generation may miss out.”


Author:  Sarah Freeman, V&A Homes



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