The rapid rise of “zero-hour contracts” is making it even harder for young people to step on to the property ladder, mortgage brokers have warned.
Zero hours just means an employee is “on-call” without a minimum amount of weekly work specified in the contract.
Mortgage experts said, like the self-employed, aspiring home owners’ options will be extremely limited while on these contracts. This is because lenders look for a history of income to prove the borrower can afford a loan; a prolonged period of low earnings on this type of contract can delay first-time buyers’ plans.
There were 583,000 employees on zero-hour contracts in the UK at the end of 2013, up from 143,000 in 2008, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Unite, the Labour union, said the figure may be much higher, as many under-thirties are employed this way without realising.
Many of these workers are in hospitality, retail, health care and education. Part of the rise has been attributed to the lack of job opportunities for university graduates, who often take on zero-hour contracts in the hope of finding more permanent roles.
Read the full article here: New blow to first-time buyers: zero-hour contracts