What do first time buyers look for in a home?

Jul 25, 2017
House Viewing
We teamed up with over 2000 first time buyers to find out exactly what it is they look for when buying their new home.

Buying your first home can be an exciting experience. We all dream of finding our ideal home from the outset, but in reality we may have to prioritise certain components of our ideal homes over others. To do so, we have to decide what the most important part of a home is for us.

Location and house size are key

87% of people surveyed stated that the location is the most important factor to them when buying a new home. House size also proved important for those looking to buy their first home; 77% of people surveyed stated that house size influenced their buying decision. And for almost a third (32%), a large garden was seen as a key factor.


We also found that first time buyers are spending up to £12,000 more than they’d intended, due to either underestimating the initial cost or deciding to spend more when buying a home for the first time.

The need to compromise

First time buyers are realistic when buying their first home, with 77% choosing to compromise on things they initially thought were important to them. People are willing to prioritise certain aspects over others as a way of getting on the property ladder faster.


Despite being highlighted as key factors for choosing a home, location, house size and gardens are the areas where most buyers compromise when buying their home. 1 in 6 end up going for a smaller property with one less bedroom, whilst 28% compromise on their location.


77% of people stated that house size influenced their decision

32% were influenced by a bigger garden

First time buyers are staying for longer

Getting your foot on the property market is an achievement and while only half of first timers plan on staying in their first homes for more than a year, 71% of people end up staying in their first homes for 4 or more years. Encouragingly, nearly a quarter of buyers found their ideal home first time round.


Additionally, only 46% of people did any basic decorating and 1 in 4 didn’t do anything to their home at all when they moved in. Ultimately, more and more first time buyers are looking for a home that's ready to move in to and requires little change to décor.

Research was carried out on behalf of Barratt Homes between May and June 2016.

More first time buyers are looking for a live-ready home