Think home ownership is out of your reach? The future could be brighter than it seems...

The average age of becoming a home owner is 36, despite most of us thinking it'll take us until we're over 40 to own a house – and it's not as costly, either

Home ownership: couple buying or selling their home
(Image credit: Getty)

It's no secret that we're becoming home owners later in life than our parents and grandparents. But it might not be as late as you think. Nope, while the average age at which we become home owners for the first time has risen to 33 from 31 in the past decade, with the trend is likely to continue pushing back home ownership till later and later, new research* shows that we tend to be much more pessimistic about our chances of home ownership than these statistics show. 

On average, those who don't yet own a home believe they will be 41 before it happens, although on average, those who already live in their own home are 36.

Northern English and Welsh cities fare particularly well for the percentage of people who believe themselves to already be living in their forever home by this age – 58 per cent of the residents of Glasgow and Liverpool, and just over half (56 and 66 per cent respectively) in Sheffield and Cardiff.  

We're similarly pessimistic when it comes to the cost of home ownership. It seems that our fears and high expectations can cloud our judgment, with many thinking their forever home will cost as much as £500,000, despite the average house price currently standing at £227,000. For one in 10 of the respondents, £1 million is the amount they believe they'll have to fork out for the home where they'll want to spend the rest of their lives. 

And what kind of property do we think of as our forever home? Unsurprisingly, for the vast majority (68 per cent), it's a house with a back garden, a garage (45 per cent) and three bedrooms (38 per cent). Thankfully, it seems that once we actually are in a position to buy a property, reality takes over, and most of us learn to love the one we get. 

*Research of 2,000 UK adults undertaken between 20th and 26th March by 4media on behalf of The Nottingham.