Generation Rent couples view buying a house together the biggest commitment

Young adults in relationships rate buying a property together as a more significant emotional and financial commitment than marriage.

Recent research revealed Brits wait two years and two months on average before purchasing a house with a partner. This is slightly longer than the average wait for couples to tie the knot, which is two years and one month, even though the nation as a whole considers marriage a bigger commitment.

A study conducted by The Leadership Factor on behalf of property buyer Good Move surveyed 2,001 UK adults in relationships about what they rank the biggest commitments in relationships and what their views are on buying property with a partner.

The logistics of buying a house together can be complicated

Buying a house as a couple has always been considered a significant milestone, but it is especially so for young adults. Brits aged between 18 and 24 rank buying a house as a bigger commitment than getting married and those aged 25 to 34 and 35 to 44 rank them equally. Getting married has traditionally been viewed as the biggest commitment a couple could make. However, this study shows young people view buying a property together as a more significant commitment.

Ross Counsell, director at Good Move, stated: “Buying a house together is a huge decision for couples, not just because of the significant financial commitment, but if the relationship comes to an end, it can be incredibly complicated and stressful to deal with the logistics.

“With recent changes to divorce legislation making it easier to end marriages, buying a house is now understandably seen as the primary relationship milestone.”

Generation Rent continues to buck national trends

As fewer young people are getting married, young adults are changing what has been the norm. More young adults are renting for longer, and as Generation Rent gets older, renting is expected to remain a popular option. Renters in the UK are even forecast to outnumber homeowners by 2039. Nowadays, there is also less urgency for people to move out of rentals and onto the property ladder, and Generation Rent is leading rental demand across the nation.

High property prices in the UK have led many to remain tenants for longer. In some regions of the UK, it’s even cheaper to rent than buy in terms of monthly costs. With many young professionals preferring city centre living, renting has become a popular option, so they can live and work in the same area and have easy access to nearby leisure activities.

As young people view buying property as the biggest commitment, even more couples are likely to live in rentals together before purchasing property. According to Good Move’s survey, nearly one in five UK adults in relationships said they wouldn’t buy a home with their partner in case they break-up. This position is the most popular among the younger generations with 36% of 25 to 34-year-olds and 25% of those aged between 18 and 24. The fear of break-ups and the challenge of dividing assets are additional reasons to dissuade people from buying houses all together.

The director of Good Move commented: “It’s why so many Brits want to live with their partner first before committing to buying anywhere. Our research found that nearly two-thirds of Brits in relationships would only buy a property together if they’d trialled co-habiting first and that’s a really sensible way to approach the situation.”

Self-certified Sophisticated Investor

Please read

I declare that I am a self-certified sophisticated investor for the purposes of the restriction on promotion of non-mainstream pooled investments. I understand that this means:

I am a self-certified sophisticated investor because at least one of the following applies:

I accept that the investments to which the promotions will relate may expose me to a significant risk of losing all of the money or other property invested. I am aware that it is open to me seek advice from someone who specialises in advising on non-mainstream pooled investments.

High Net Worth Investor

Please read

I make this statement so that I can receive promotional communications which are exempt from the restriction on promotion of non-mainstream pooled investments. The exemption relates to certified high net worth investors and I declare that I qualify as such because at least one of the following applies to me:


Sign up for first access to new developments and exclusive property investment opportunities.

We send limited and targeted emails on new launches and exclusive deals which best fit your areas. We are trusted by over 30,000 active buyers as their source for new stock.

  • New property developments
  • Professional market reports
  • Property deal alerts
  • Development updates
Manchester property investment


Receive trending news straight to your inbox and stay up to date on all of the property market trends and advice.

Established since 2005 we are a leading voice of authority and commentary on the UK property market. Our news is trusted by Apple News & Google News.

  • UK housing market
  • Mortgage & money
  • Buy-to-let landlords
  • Guides & advice

Talk to us

Speak to our UK property experts today:


+44 (0) 333 123 0320

Open from 9am-6pm GMT


+852 6699 9008

Open from 9am-6pm HKT