The time gap between people moving home has increased from nine to 23 years since the late 1980s as high house prices have made moving up the property ladder more expensive, research by market analyst Hometrack has revealed.
This may explain why property transactions have not recovered their pre-financial crisis crash. Before the global banking meltdown approximately 120,000 properties were sold each month, a figure which is currently running at just under half that number, according to latest Land Registry figures.
Hometrack, which was purchased by ZPG recently, says the average Brit moves home every 22.7 years. Those in Scotland are the most frequent home movers, changing address every 19.6 years followed by the South West at 20.6 years and the East of England at 20.9 years.
The Welsh are the most reluctant movers, changing home every 26.8 years on average. Residents in Powys, mid-Wales only move home once every 33.1 years, the data shows.
On a very local level, Midlothian in Scotland, which covers the area south of Edinburgh between East Lothian and the Scottish Borders, is where people move home the most frequently, or every 14.9 years, five years faster than the rest of the UK.
This is followed by Dartford outside London at 16.5 years and central Edinburgh at 16.6 years.
Zoopla suggests there is a correlation between how long people stay in their homes and high house prices and demand, whereas “regions where properties change hands less often can suggest a lower level of demand, or less housing stock,” says Zoopla’s spokesman Lawrence Hall.
“Oxford is a slight exception to this rule as slow property turnover in this famous city is most likely a result of both a scarcity of available properties and also a lack of affordability in the local property market.”