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by administrator @, Friday, January 27, 2012, 14:07

Brits are relatively upbeat about the property market for 2012, according to new research from Santander Mortgages, which reveals that eight per cent of Britons (3.7 million) believe they are likely to successfully purchase a new home in 2012.

The news comes as the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) reports slightly more positive data for the industry with a four per cent rise in mortgage completions in November, compared to October.

Also consistent with the CML's data is the news that younger people are the most likely to buy, with 12% of those aged 18-34 saying they are likely to purchase a new home. This is compared to seven per cent of 35-54 year-olds and five per cent of those aged 55 or over. Overall, 53% of those planning to buy a home are more positive about their prospects of being able to do so than a year ago, compared to only 15% who are more negative.

By region, Londoners are the most confident about their chances of purchasing a home this year, with 13% believing it is likely they will do so. At the other end of the scale only four per cent of those in the East of England think they are likely to buy a new property in 2012.

Of those who are likely to buy a new home this year, roughly a quarter (24%) will be first time buyers, while just over a third (37%) intend to buy a new house and sell their current one. A further 15% plan to buy to let and 11% will be buying an additional property to one or more they already own.

Of those who feel they are unlikely to buy a new home this year, the most significant obstacle is not having enough money for a deposit (22%). This is a particular problem for those aged 18 to 34, 42% of whom cite this as a reason for not purchasing this year. 14% say they can't afford to buy in the area they want to live in and 9 per cent are simply unable to get a mortgage.

Five per cent of aspiring home buyers say they can't find a property they like within their price range and 3 per cent are waiting for prices to fall further. An additional 4 per cent say unemployment is the main reason for not buying in 2012, and 2 per cent say it's because they are worried about losing their job. Others have made a conscious decision not to buy, with 8 per cent preferring to rent and 2 per cent happy to remain living with their parents or other relatives for free.

Phil Cliff, Director of Santander Mortgages, said: "Given the tough economic climate people are becoming more upbeat about their prospects of purchasing a new home this year. It's been a tough few years for the property market overall, but prices have made a steady recovery so there's every reason to feel cautiously optimistic.

"There are however, still a number of obstacles out there facing potential buyers, including securing the required funds, which is why the need to look around for the best deals and get some sound advice in terms of properties and mortgages is now greater than ever."

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