Two couples share their journey to home-ownership (Picture: Metro.co.uk)
For most of us in Generation Rent, it sometimes feels like you’re just never going to be able to afford your own house.
High rents make it hard to save, the bank of mum and dad doesn’t last forever and house prices just keep on going up.
But luckily, schemes like Help To Buy and shared ownership are making it a little bit easier to start your journey to owning your own home.
We spoke to two young families who have already managed to climb the first rung of the property ladder to find out how they did it.
‘We didn’t have to compromise at all’
Pre-school worker Rachell Maude Turner and cleaning supervisor Ryan Boomer have lived in Milton Keynes all their lives and wanted to stay there when they bought their first home together.
The couple, both 28, lived with Ryan’s parents for eight years, then rented a three-bedroom house while they researched new homes for sale nearby. But they couldn’t find one they liked as much as the one they were renting and felt they’d have to lower their expectations.
Then they booked a viewing at L&Q’s Saxon Reach on the outskirts of Milton Keynes and fell in love with the show home’s ‘spacious entrance, high ceilings, soft carpets and fully integrated kitchen appliances’.
Rachell says: ‘The house ticked every box on our list. The rooms were all bigger than those in our home at the time, as was the garden. There was one three-bedroom, shared ownership townhouse left, so we reserved it immediately. We didn’t want to risk anyone else taking our dream house.’
They bought a 45% share. ‘The process was extremely smooth, even in the pandemic,’ adds Rachell. ‘This home needed no compromises and will be perfect to raise children. We plan on staircasing as ideally we’d like to own 100% of our forever home.’
Saxon Reach is a community of shared ownership and private sale one- to five-bedroom homes.
The next phase launches next month, with prices expected to start at £77,500 for 25% of a two-bed house with a market value of £310,000.
Find out more information at lqhomes.com.
‘Without Help to Buy none of this would be possible’
Christine and her little boy Oscar were able to move to a new house in Merseyside thanks to Help To Buy (Picture: Mark Waugh Manchester Press Photography Ltd)
Christine McLaren used Help to Buy to secure a three-bedroom house at Victoria Mews by Barratt Homes in Southport, Merseyside, moving in with son Oscar, three, Elvis the dog and Wayne the cat last summer.
‘We were in a rented maisonette and I needed a fresh start following a change in circumstances,’ explains Christine, 31, a nurse specialist.
‘Toddlers need space to run and I needed a bigger kitchen. The thought of a pristine new home was ideal. As a single parent at the time I never thought it would be possible to get a mortgage.
‘But the sales team at Victoria Mews put me in touch with a mortgage adviser who was able to help me find one with competitive rates, and I worked a lot of extra hours and had financial help from my family.
Christine’s partner Ryan came to live with them at Victoria Mews (Picture: Mark Waugh Manchester Press Photography Ltd)
‘Help to Buy made buying my house affordable on a single wage, and without it none of this would be possible.’ She reserved her home while it was still being built. ‘It was fun to pick my own tiles, flooring and kitchen, as choice is something I never thought I’d have after renting for 10 years.’
She and Oscar were soon joined by her partner Ryan McGuinness, a personal banker. ‘The house is the perfect size for all of us,’ adds Christine. ‘We’ve a garden for Oscar and Elvis, Wayne sunbathes in the middle, and the area is quiet and beautiful.’
Victoria Mews has several family homes for sale
Three and four-bedroom houses are currently for sale at Victoria Mews, just outside Southport and a 40-minute drive from Liverpool city centre. Prices start from £210,000 with Help to Buy on offer.
Find out more information at barratthomes.co.uk.
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