Now generation rent faces financial "time bomb" after managing to jump on the property ladder

Lynsey Barber
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Bending over backwards to get on the property ladder, but there could be more trouble ahead (Source: Getty)

Generation rent hasn't totally given up hope of ever owning their own home - yet, anyway.

But as well as the average age of the first time buyer rising to 30.4 years old, there's a new burden for them to shoulder, as worry is shifting to how and when they will pay for it all as they get older.

One in three people under the age of 45 expect to be working into their retirement to pay off their mortgage. For current homeowners that's 28 per cent, but for those not yet on the housing ladder, it's an even higher 39 per cent.

Read more: The number of rental properties in the UK is dangerously low

Nearly half are worried about not being able to afford mortgage repayments when they do retire and a similar number worry they will, in fact, have to work longer because of the costs of their mortgage. Six per cent said they expect to still be paying off the loan in their 70s and eight per cent throughout their entire life.

And in a double whammy, exactly half are also worried that mortgage payments will hamper their ability to save for their retirement too, according to Halifax's latest Generation Rent report.

Scottish Widows retirement expert Robert Cochran said:

Our research tells us that 45 per cent of people in their 30s and 40s are prioritising spending now, yet with younger generations expecting to be paying mortgages into retirement, it's more important now than ever that people push retirement saving up their financial agenda and get a better understanding of how pounds in a pension pot translate into income in retirement to avoid facing a financial time bomb at the stage when they want to stop working.

How are generation rent managing to jump on the property ladder? Buying with a partner is the most common option for nearly half, while extending a mortgage beyond 25 years is the second most likely way (34 per cent) to secure a foot on the ladder.

Read more: Londoners will need to earn this much to buy first home in 2020

Of first time buyers taking out a mortgage, just 16 per cent were for 35 years in 2007. By 2015 that stood at more than a quarter while the share of 20 to 25 year mortgages fell from 48 per cent to 30 per cent over that time.

“Despite the barriers and the understandable concerns, it’s very positive to see that younger generations are still striving to get onto the housing ladder, with more than 300,000 taking that first step in 2015, " said Halifax mortgage director Craig McKinlay.

“This recovery has been fuelled by a number of factors, including an abundance of successful Government initiatives and the affordability of monthly mortgage repayments due to the continuing low interest rate environment and some very competitive deals. Although many of those late to the ladder will inevitably still be paying their mortgages later into life, they are increasingly taking a range of measures to ease the burden.”

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