Mortgage vs marriage - Britons swap wedding ring for rung on the property ladder

12 Nov 2012 08:00 GMT

Britons are shunning big white weddings in a bid to get on the property ladder, new research from Barclays reveals today. 52% of Britons – more than half the UK population – would choose to put their savings towards a deposit for a property – proving that home really is where the heart is.

Marriages are in the minority with just one in ten (12%) opting for wedding bells over their own doorbell. Perhaps most surprisingly, the wedding charge is led by men with almost twice as many men choosing marriage over bricks and mortar than women (16% vs 9%).

With the cost of a wedding averaging £20,000, the findings reveal that almost one in ten (9%) engaged couples have decided to downsize the scale of their nuptials or delay them altogether in an effort to save for a property purchase. So daunting is the prospect for many that a further 13% would consider asking guests for a monetary contribution towards the cost of their wedding instead of a traditional gift.

Laoiseach Lynch, head of mortgage products at Barclays said “With the average home deposit costing in the region of £16,000, it’s not surprising that couples are having to think twice about the way in which they tackle the dilemma of tying the knot and buying a property. What we’ve seen, however, is that with a little lateral thinking and some sensible saving and budgeting they are finding increasingly savvy ways to have their wedding cake and eat it.”

As emotive and potentially thorny as the subject may be, it seems couples are bound not in matrimony but in agreement: just 5% admit to disagreeing on whether to get married or buy a home.

The study also revealed…

· The Northern Irish and Londoners are most likely to want to get married (18% and 16% respectively); the South and Wales are least likely (9% apiece)

· Almost two thirds (60%) of adults living in the South would rather focus on buying a home compared with just two in five of those in Northern Ireland (42%)

· Men are more likely to consider ‘pre-gifting’, with 16% saying they’d consider asking guests for help with the wedding beforehand, versus just one in ten women (10%)

Top tips whether you’re being carried over the threshold or simply want to buy one…

· Something old: and so the old adage goes: a little goes a long way. It may seem obvious but try to put away a fixed amount each month. It won’t be long before you start to see that pot of savings grow

· Something new: get the free Barclays mobile banking app , allowing you to access your finances on the go and keep on top of your savings plan and outgoings

· Something borrowed: in the current climate, we’re seeing more than ever, families getting together to help out with big financial decisions such as buying a home and saving for a deposit. Explore the Barclays Family Affordability Plan which allows parents to help their children get on or move up the property ladder

· Something blue: there’s nothing quite like talking to someone about the big decisions in life. Barclays is on hand to advise on all aspects of personal finance and banking options. Simply visit your local branch for a chat.

For more information about Barclays range of mortgages please visit www.barclays.co.uk/mortgages

Notes to Editors:

About the research

1. Research was conducted by YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2,185 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 31st October – 2nd November 2012. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).

2. The cost of a wedding averaging £20,000 was taken from Money Saving Expert

3. The average cost of a home is £163,376 and the average deposit needed to secure a home purchase is now 10% = £16,338. This was calculated using Land Registry figures (October 2012).

Government region breakdown - Percentage of UK opting for mortgage over marriage

Region

Percentage

South West

61%

South East

60%

East of England

55%

Yorkshire and the Humber

53%

East Midlands

53%

London

53%

North West

50%

Wales

48%

Scotland

47%

West Midlands

45%

Northern Ireland

42%

North East

39%

Case studies

Case studies and interviews with Barclays spokespeople are available. Please contact the press office on number above.

Adam and Aimee - Adam has been with girlfriend Amy for seven years. Adam sees owning a property as more important than getting married. In an ideal world, he would go for both but currently, owing to the couple’s financial situation, it’s one or the other. It’s not that he doubts the future of the relationship, Adam simply sees more long-term security in bricks and mortar compared with a marriage certificate.

Chris and Alexandra - Chris and Xan (short for Alexandra), recently bought their first home together in August. They’ve been together for six and a half years and planned to get married in the next few years. Despite being together for quite some time, for them, getting on the property ladder was a more important first step. However in retrospect, they know their decision to buy means they definitely won’t be able to afford to get married for a few years longer. This is largely because their parents helped them out with the deposit, so they can’t go back to them for help with a wedding anytime soon, and they know they can’t afford the whole cost themselves.

Francesca and Luke – Live in London and work in PR and advertising. They’ve been together for over two years and have just purchased a home together in Streatham. They felt buying a place together was a huge commitment in itself and felt that marriage could happen further down the line as getting on the property ladder as a first step was most important. Francesca knew she was going to need help from her parents so when she asked for help with the deposit, they gave her the choice of having the money for her wedding or for a mortgage. She opted for the mortgage. Although she’s still holding out on the hope they might find a bit more money to help them with a wedding down the line.

About Barclays

Barclays is a major global financial services provider engaged in retail banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking and wealth management with an extensive international presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia.

With over 300 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs over 140,000 people. Barclays moves, lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.

For further information about Barclays, please visit our website www.barclays.com.


About Barclays

Barclays is a major global financial services provider engaged in personal banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking and wealth and investment management with an extensive international presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia. Barclays’ purpose is to help people achieve their ambitions – in the right way.

With over 300 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs approximately 140,000 people. Barclays moves, lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.

For further information about Barclays, please visit our website www.barclays.com.