Families in Sunderland face eight-year fight to buy first home

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YOUNG people in Sunderland have to save for eight years to put down a deposit to buy a house, new figures show.

According to reserach from housing charity Shelter, couples without children face 3.8 years of saving, leaving many with the difficult choice between getting on the property ladder and starting a family.

However, single people and couples with children face an even greater problem, with a wait of 8.8 and 8.6 years, respectively, until they can afford to buy.

Shelter’s chief executive, Campbell Robb, said: “Homeownership used to be within most people’s reach, but the rising shortage of affordable homes has pushed house prices up so high that for millions of young people it’s now just a fantasy, however how hard they work or save.

“Parents are right to be worried.

“The reality is that unless we get a grip on the housing shortage soon, children today could spend decades paying out dead money in expensive rents, or living at home well into adulthood with little hope of planning for their own families.

“Successive governments have announced scheme after scheme promising to help first time buyers, but these have just papered over the cracks.

“The only way to make sure young people have a hope of a home of their own is for politicians to roll up their sleeves and commit to building enough truly affordable homes.”

Sunderland Central MP Julie Elliott said: “A lack of affordable homes is a problem. It is compounded by the fact that a lot of the jobs are zero-hours, part-time or short-term contracts. A lot of people simply can’t afford to buy their home, and insecure employment means that many can’t even get a mortgage.”