Moving house AGAIN? One in eight of us have already bought three 'forever homes'

New survey reveals that changing fortunes and circumstances result in many unexpected house moves

(Image credit: Thomas Sanderson)

What were your intentions when you moved into your current home? Was it your first step onto the property ladder, or did you purchase the property thinking you would raise your family/grow old there?

A new survey of 2,300 home owners reveals that our intentions and the reality of our living situations often don't match. For 12 per cent of the respondents, every home they've bought was intended as their 'forever home', but life interfered with their plans to stay. A growing family, unexpected inheritance, career changes and relationship breakdowns have forced these home owners to abandon their forever homes, as many as three times

On the other hand, for 15 per cent of the respondents, it's been the other way round, with what was intended to be a starter home becoming their forever home, as far as they can see. These home owners have no intention of moving due to rising housing costs (46 per cent), access to local schools (19 per cent), and an uncertain economic climate (9 per cent).

Interestingly, well over a third of respondents (36 per cent) feel that they hadn't given their home purchase enough thought, buying entirely on the basis of how nice the house looked or how good the location was, without considering a house as an asset or investment. They now look back on their decision as 'foolish or naive'. 

'It can be hard to find your "forever home" as reality overrides expectation and can leave people disappointed in not being able to afford their dream property,' says Tara Hall, spokesperson for Hillarys,  who conducted the survey. 'Life circumstances and plans can change drastically, and that is clearly reflected within our research.'

Want to make sure your own house purchase is well thought through? Consult our advice on how to buy a house