Homeowners over 50 hold three-quarters of the country’s housing wealth, according to new research from global property adviser Savills.
These older homeowners, who have benefited from years of strong housing price growth, now own 75 per cent of all equity, with a total value of £2.8 trillion.
The analysis reveals the extent to which equity is concentrated in the hands of older households. Over-65s own 43 per cent of the country’s equity and are worth £1.6 trillion. By contrast, under-35s own less than six per cent of equity, about £214bn.
“Unlike many younger households, older home owners have huge buying power and a range of choices, particularly those in the South and East,” said Lawrence Bowles, Savills research analyst. “Our analysis shows that there’s truth in the old stereotype of affluent households selling up in London for a ‘move to the country’”.
Housing wealth in London is more evenly distributed across different age groups. In the city, over-50s account for 65 per cent of housing wealth held by owner occupiers. Meanwhile under-35s own 11 per cent, much higher than the six per cent national average.
This figure is due to London’s more youthful population, where the average age is 36, compared to 40 across the rest of the country.
Older households have the greatest property share in the South West, where over 50s own 80 per cent of homeowner equity, or about £293bn. Over 65s alone own almost half of the region’s housing wealth. Younger home owners in the South West own just four per cent or £15bn of housing wealth across the region.
“Our analysis shows that there’s truth in the old stereotype of affluent households selling up in London for a ‘move to the country’,” said Lawrence Bowles, Savills research analyst. “The figures for the South West of England are evidence of the trend for older home owners making a lifestyle move, making the region arguably the country’s largest naturally occurring retirement community.”