Mortgage at 20: How couple boosted savings by thousands and buy two-bed with big garden | Personal Finance | Finance

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However, Lucie and Ben, from Atteborough in Norfolk, saving up the deposit and securing a mortgage is something which they have recent experience in. The couple, both 20, recently purchased their first home.

The first-time buyers purchased together, spending a total of £210,000 for their two-bedroom house which boasts a large garden.

The Gen Z couple bought their home after saving money with a Help to Buy ISA.

This savings scheme, which is now closed to new accounts, enables savers to get a 25 percent government boost.

The maximum government bonus a person can earn via this account is £3,000, although this can only be achieved over a period of time due to deposit limits.

Before buying their house last year, during the coronavirus pandemic, the couple lived with Lucie’s mum and stepdad.

The living arrangements meant the couple didn’t pay rent and only needed to make “minimal” contributions to household bills, so they could dedicate themselves to saving.

Recognising the fortunate position they were in, they decided to commit to buying a property.

Really wanting their own space and to prepare themselves for the future financially, Lucie and Ben wrote down how much they would need for a deposit.

Prior to the closure of the Help to Buy ISA scheme to new accounts, both Lucie and Ben had set up their own separate accounts with Barclays, paying in the maximum amount of £1,200 in the first month, and then subsequently the maximum contributions of £200 each month.

They saved from November 2019 until December last year.

Luckily for them, the Covid pandemic accelerated their savings, with Lucie being on a full wage and Ben furloughed.

They still managed to put all their money straight into their house deposit fund, with the pandemic limiting what they could do.

But, when restrictions did ease, the couple continued to choose to stay in so they could pour any spare money into savings.

Lucie, a medical secretary for the NHS, and Ben, who works for an insurance broker, were able to save enough to put down a five percent deposit on their property.

They managed to negotiate the price of the purchase down to £202,000, through an NHS discount offered by the developer.

Buying a new build, the pair were also able to use the government’s help-to-buy scheme.

Purchasing with no family support, the two decided the help-to-buy scheme was the “best option” to afford them the house they wanted.

Once they had saved enough and decided upon the house they wanted, the buyers went out finding a mortgage adviser – something they did through social media.

Lucie and Ben found this made their mortgage process “very smooth”, with the mortgage advisor supporting them and helping to explain everything to them during their purchasing journey.

“Having an expert who makes you feel comfortable asking questions is invaluable, especially if you’re new to the world of mortgages.”

Be patient

“The process of buying a home can take some time, and there are certain elements which may feel frustrating.

“Whilst you may want to know your exact move in date straight away, it’s important to remain patient, and follow expert advice.”

Watch out for hidden costs

“There are some hidden fees which you will need to factor into your budget planning, and it’s useful to have a ‘buffer’ fund just in case.

“For example, search fees and survey fees charged by the solicitor may come as a surprise, and you don’t want to be caught out!”





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