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Over 700,000 wannabe homebuyers relying on windfall

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More than three quarters of a million people are relying on an inheritance to help them onto the property ladder, a study shows.

Research by Castle Trust found that improved life expectancy means 772,000 potential buyers currently waiting for a financial windfall will have to put off buying.

More than half of those struggling to get onto the property ladder cited difficulty raising a deposit as their main barrier.

The survey indicates that 4.1m adults in the UK have given up on ever owning their own home; 1.8m of these are people aged 25 to 44. 

Matthew Wyles of Castle Trust said: “There is a crisis in the UK housing market where young people have little or no chance of getting on to the property ladder unless they receive financial support from parents or grandparents.”

Castle Trust’s figures were released in response to Shelter and KPMG’s joint housing report, published  on 1 May, which called on the next government to take strong action on building homes.

The organisations estimate that Britain needs 250,000 new homes each year to keep up with demand, yet only 110,000 were constructed in the past 12 months.

According to KPMG, a quarter of English adults under the age of 35 are living in their childhood bedroom as housing prices threaten to quadruple to £900,000 by 2034.

The report’s authors believe that by this time half of Britain’s 20 to 34 year olds could be living with their parents. 

Marianne Fallon, UK head of corporate affairs at KPMG, said: “What is clear from our report is just how big and messy our housing problem is. For many people, particularly those in their twenties, the aspiration of owning their own ‘castle’ is becoming a fairy tale.”

Shelter and KPMG have called on the next government to release infrastructure spending to unlock stalled house-building sites, set up a ‘Help to build’ scheme using government guarantees to help small builders access the market, introduce a new National Housing Investment Bank to finance affordable house building, and put housing at the centre of City deals, giving towns and cities the power to build the homes their communities need.

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