Only a fraction of over-55s considering downsizing, reveals Pegasus study

A recent survey by Pegasus has disclosed that a mere 14% of individuals over the age of 55 are considering downsizing their homes.

The study, which involved over 2,000 adults, revealed that half of the respondents intend to remain in their current homes post-retirement, a figure that escalates to 68% among those aged between 71 and 75.

The primary obstacles deterring downsizing include the hassle of moving, highlighted by 37% of participants, followed by the cost of stamp duty at 35%, and a noticeable lack of suitable housing options, as indicated by 26% of potential downsizers.

Steve Bangs, CEO of Pegasus, said: “The downsizing dilemma is significant for the industry for two reasons – not only does it underline the lack of supply and need to build more homes fit for all, but it also underscores a huge concern with the overall health of the housing market.”

He further noted the potential ripple effect on the housing market, emphasising the difficulties upsizing families and first-time buyers might face due to the stagnation caused by older homeowners remaining in larger family homes.

Bangs also addressed the challenges within England’s planning system, adding: “England’s rigid planning system fails to provide a framework that enables and encourages the delivery of homes in the later living sector.

“This puts the UK decades behind countries like the US, with our nation’s perception of later living and the reality of age-specific housing completely mismatched.

“The lack of supply of quality mid-sized and smaller homes combined with the lack of awareness of a step that exists before moving into a dedicated care-led facility keeps the sectors potential capped for consumers.”