KIS Bridging Loans
Presented by KIS Finance


Many of us have experienced a point in life where it seems like everyone we know is getting married, or having a baby, or buying a house - perhaps including you. But, before these things actually happen, when do we imagine our major milestones will occur? And does life ever follow that course?

Our research has shown that the reality of when life’s important events take place has changed considerably since the 1980s. We conducted a survey of everyday Brits and compared the results to official data from the Office for National Statistics and other government bodies. We used this data to work out how accurate our predictions are of when we actually experience life’s major milestones and how this has changed between the generations.

First steps on the property ladder

The average age of first time-buyers has increased by 15% from age 26 in 1980 to 31 in 2018.

So why the increase in age?

It could have something to do with budgeting – according to our survey, Brits underestimate how much is needed for a deposit by a whopping 56%. Our respondents thought they’d need about £18,000, whereas data suggests it’s more in the region of £33,000. The total borrowings for first-time buyers has also increased with the median amount needed growing by a whopping 959% due to house prices rising from £23,288 in 1980 to £230,630 in 2018.

When it comes to scraping the funds together, government data for deposits for first time buyers suggests that several factors pay into the home-buying pot:

  • 81% used savings for their deposit
  • 29% used a gift or loan from family
  • 7% inherited money
house price vs amount borrowed

Holly Andrews, Managing Director at KIS Finance said: “It’s very common for people to underestimate the cost of many of life’s key events.  We often see this with first time buyers who may have unrealistic expectations of the cost of purchasing their first home.  With the increase in property prices the current generation of first time buyers are needing to borrow more at a time when lending criteria is much tighter than in the past.”

“It’s really important for people to plan ahead and take professional advice to help them gain a clear understanding of the true costs involved and to ensure that they are informed on the various options available to help first time buyers achieve their home ownership goals.”

Tying the knot

According to our survey, the average age people predicted they would marry was 28. However, only 47% actually hit that target with the majority getting married later.

According to ONS data, Brits are leaving it later in life before tying the knot, with the average age now being 31 for women (up 29% since the 80s) and 33 for men (up 27%).

Age at first marriage graph

It’s not just when people are getting married that has changed over the last few decades but also how they are choosing to do so. 74% are now opting for a civil ceremony over a religious ceremony which is an increase of 45% since 1980.

Religious vs civil marriage graph

Worryingly though, the survey found that people underestimate the cost of a wedding by a staggering £24,000.

Also, it seems that we are increasingly choosing not to marry at all, with a 28% decrease in marriages over the same period and a corresponding 8% decrease in divorces.

First child

So how good are we at predicting when we’ll hear the pitter-patter of little feet?

It seems that most people are right about the timing of having their first child – our survey showed that the majority of people predicted they’d be 31, which is the same age the ONS reports as being the UK average.

This has increased significantly since 1980 when the average age of first time mothers was 25.

These trends indicate that the average age is likely to continue edging upwards as an increasing number of first time mothers are over 35.

Graph of first child

Another interesting statistic is that an increasing number of couples are choosing to have children outside of marriage with the number of births to unmarried couples increasing by 422% since 1980.

Graph of children born inside or outside marriage

Overall Comparisons

Overall changes in average age

The end!

The inevitable end isn’t something many of us want to think about, let alone predict, but it’s a part of everyone’s story.

The most recent deaths by single year data shows us that, in 2017, the highest number of women who died were age 88, while the highest number of men were age 86. In terms of life expectancy at birth, the latest ONS release states that it’s 79.2 years for men 82.9 years for women.

This has increased quite significantly since 1980 with the average life expectancy for men being 70.8 and 76.8 for women.

While it’s important to take the time to look back (or ahead) and think about the major milestones, our survey revealed that life tends to follow its own course, despite how many predictions we might make! Find out how we can help you take control of the now with a bridging loan or development finance that will set your future on an entirely new path.

Data Sources:

PEW Research Centre – generational data

ONS – marriage/births/death data

ONS – marriage/births/death data


UK Finance – first time buyer data

Money Supermarket – first time buyer data

Land Registry – House price data

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