The start of any new year sees some reflections made on the year that’s preceded it. And as we welcome in 2022, the first wave of insight as to how 2021 went in the mortgage industry is starting to be seen.

A really eye-catching piece of news we felt compelled to report on is regarding the number of first-time buyers that were recorded in 2021.

There is also some fascinating insight into how much of a role first time buyers are playing in the mortgage industry as a whole.

So without further ado, the first Roots Mortgages blog of 2022 looks at why there is a fuss about first-time buyers at the moment.

2021 sees 20-year high for first-time buyer mortgages

First things first: 2021 was a HUGE year for first-time buyers. This is despite all the uncertainty that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic presented.

The latest estimates from Yorkshire Building Society indicate that the number of first-time buyer transactions in 2021 reached a staggering 408,379.

This is the highest figure of its kind since 2002. This was of course during a time before the financial crisis which hit the housing market so forcefully in the mid-2000s.

What’s behind these statistics?

A number of factors combined to help encourage and enable people to purchase their own property for the first time in 2021. 

These include an increasing number of low-deposit mortgage deals, stamp duty changes, while initiatives like Deposit Unlock will also have supported first-time buyers.

Wider factors will also have played a part. These include lower levels of unemployment and lower borrowing costs. 

First-time buyers are crucial to the market

The statistics around first-time buyers in 2021 prove the importance of this type of buyer to the market. 

50% of house purchases with a mortgage were by first-time buyers in 2021. Compare this to 2007, when first-time buyers only comprised 36% of mortgage transactions, and the growth is substantial.

With half of all mortgage purchases in 2021 coming from first-time buyers, the need to support such applicants is vast.

Make 2022 the year you get on the property ladder

Offering such support is a responsibility we take seriously at Roots Mortgages. Our team is committed to supporting contractor and freelancer applicants who are seeking to get onto the property ladder for the first time.

If this is you, the recent statistics should also be read as an indication that the mortgage market is ready and able to welcome you into its ranks. So don’t let concerns about proving affordability or worries about aloof lenders hold you back.

Take a look through our first-time buyers guide when you get the chance, and you may also find our 3 steps to getting the best mortgage deal guide useful too.

2022 can be the year that you join the first-time buyer ranks as a contractor or freelancer. So if you haven’t yet set yourself any specific goals for the new year, that’s as good as any.