Everyone knows moving house is a pricey business.
But it turns out it could be even more expensive than you thought, with new research suggesting homebuyers are spending nearly double what they expect to move house.
Post Office Money’s ‘Cost of Buying & Moving’ study found homebuyers are spending an average of £13,219 on the ‘additional costs’ of moving house, like estate agent fees, stamp duty, conveyancing and surveyors’ fees and removal costs.
That’s nearly double the £7,496 they expect it to cost – and 65% more than it cost in 2005.
The figure’s actually lower than last year’s high of £16,381, thanks to the average stamp duty bill falling from £8,166 to £4,372.
But despite the slight drop, 85% of prospective homebuyers are still underestimating the amount they need to set aside for the extra costs of moving.
The extra costs come on top of hefty deposits homebuyers need for their new property – which is at £94,280 for the average home, and an average of £48,198 for the average first-time buyer.
With the extra costs of moving set to hit £17,717 by 2020, wannabe buyers will have to squirrel away even more money to move.
John Willcock, head of mortgages at Post Office Money, said: “It is easy to focus so much on saving for the all-important deposit that people forget the additional costs that come with moving, particularly for first-time buyers who have never been through the process before.
“Planning ahead is vital and potential homebuyers should factor these costs in early on to avoid being faced with stressful, last-minute bills.”
The research found that one of the most significant moving costs to rise over the past 10 years is the fee charged by estate agents, which has soared by 60% from the end of 2005 to 2015, from £3,552 to £5,697.
Conveyancing costs and surveyors’ fees risen by 36% and 34% respectively and the amount charged by the average removals service has increased by 17%, from £886 in 2005 to £1,037 in 2015.
Mr Willcock added: “Forecasts indicate that the cost of buying and moving will only continue to rise over the next five years, even with the impact of revised stamp duty rules introduced to reduce the impact on prospective buyers’ wallets.
“With research indicating that 85% of these buyers have underestimated how much they should budget for these costs, many could be left out-of-pocket at a time when they are already financially stretched.
“We are aware of the barriers that people can face when they are looking to purchase their first home or move further up the ladder. This is why we offer a range of different mortgages aimed at a wide variety of buyers.”
The study, compiled by Post Office Money and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), interviewed 616 UK adults looking to buy a home in the next three years.