SOARING utility bills and higher council tax is making it increasingly difficult for first-time buyers to get on to the property ladder, research showed today.
One in three people purchasing their first home said concerns about energy bills meant they would not consider buying a property that did not have double glazing and cavity wall insulation to make it more energy efficient.
A further 16% also said they would only opt for a house that was heated by electricity, as they thought gas central heating was more expensive, according to Yorkshire Bank.
Gary Lumby, head of retail at Yorkshire Bank, said: "It's not just the elderly who are affected by energy price rises, but also younger people."
He added that the average household now paid nearly £1,000 a year in energy bills.
Council tax rises are also hitting first-time buyers, with nearly a quarter of people looking for their first home saying they had put off plans to buy somewhere until after local councils had announced what their charges would be for the year ahead.