Almost three-quarters of consumers say home ownership “more unattainable than ever”
Last editedSep 20232 min read
Of those, over two-thirds (69%) blame the current cost of living crisis
Over a third (37%) say the process of saving for a mortgage deposit is “difficult”, and of those, nearly half (46%) admit that it has had a negative impact on their mental well-being
Four in ten (41%) believe that mortgage lenders are relying on “outdated” methods to assess applications
Two in five (42%) believe lenders should embrace technologies like open banking to consider more data points – such as everyday spending and rent payments – when assessing their mortgage application
21 September, London – New research from GoCardless, the bank payment company, finds that 72% of Brits believe home ownership in the UK is “more unattainable than ever” – and of those, nearly seven in ten (69%) say it’s due to the cost of living crisis.
A trying home-buying experience
The study indicates that over a third (37%) of respondents find saving for a mortgage in the UK a “difficult” process. When asked why, 65% say it’s because their income has stayed the same while the cost of everyday goods, such as petrol and groceries, has increased. Nearly a third (32%) agree “the interest rate on savings accounts are generally too low”.
In addition, 46% of people who find the process difficult believe the experience has had a negative impact on their mental well-being. However, this figure masks some big variations by age – with the proportion jumping to 69% for 25-34 year olds and dropping to just 29% for those over 55.
The research also reveals a number of complaints about the mortgage application process:
43% say that applying for a mortgage can be confusing
40% also believe that the process is “extremely stressful”
12% go as far as to call it “unfair”
Certain groups feel even more negatively: While 21% of employees believe they are “unfairly penalised” by mortgage lenders, this figure rises to 31% for those who are self-employed.
Demanding a better process
Consumers are not afraid to suggest what mortgage lenders can do to make the experience better. Two in five (42%) believe lenders should embrace technologies like open banking to consider more data points – such as everyday spending, bill repayments or rent payments – when assessing their mortgage application. When looking at the more technologically savvy 18-34 age range, this figure rises to over half (52%).
On new technologies, a quarter (26%) would be willing to share their bank account data through open banking so lenders can see all their incomings and outgoings, instead of relying on the items shared in traditional credit checks. In both the 24-34 and 35-44 age groups, the proportion of people who agree rises to 35%.
Pat Phelan, Managing Director of UK&I and Chief Customer Officer at GoCardless, said: "The results indicate that home ownership feels increasingly out of reach for many of us. The cost of living crisis certainly doesn't help and it's clear that the whole process, from saving to applying for a mortgage, has caused the nation a lot of confusion, not to mention stress.
New technologies like open banking could make a huge difference. We could use open banking data to generate personalised savings tips, shortening the time it takes to build up the deposit for our first or forever home. And it could reduce the time and effort we spend on the mortgage application itself, while also giving lenders a better picture of our financial situation. From start to finish, open banking has the potential to make the entire home-buying journey easier, faster and more fair.”
Notes to Editors
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All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2,014 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 3rd - 4th August 2023. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).