When Anya Clements and Calum Jones started looking at buying a home together, they were initially filled with excitement – but then, fear began to kick in as interest rates were on the rise.
For the couple, aged 22 and 27, this meant that their dream of owning a home seemed “impossible” and while they kept looking, there was nothing suitable within their £250,000 budget.
In a bid to make their wishes come true, the children’s nurse and Welsh Parliament member took up seven jobs between them, moved two hours away from their family and stopped eating out.
Now, after saving up £20,000 over four years, they have finally moved into their new four-bed, two-bathroom, semi-detached home, costing £295,000 – but say that not using the “bank of mum and dad” is no longer an option.
“In this day and age, it’s become impossible for people to get on the property ladder alone,” Anya, from Cardiff, Wales, told NeedToKnow.co.uk.
“If people are fortunate enough to have the help of their parents, then I think it’s a great idea, as it gets you into the market.
“I would always encourage everyone to save themselves and not ask mum and dad – unless they offer – as it’s a big commitment.
“We felt very guilty when my parents offered, but we’re so proud of saving ourselves and paying for the whole place nearly on our own.
“It’s a massive achievement and there are lots of schemes out there for first-time buyers which I think are worth taking a look at.”
Anya and Calum initially had the idea of purchasing a three-bed, detached home and realised there were many options available within their budget.
In a bid to increase their money pool, they started putting £200 per month into a Help To Buy ISA, a now-ended government scheme, which promised an extra 20% loan.
They also used Martin Lewis’ expert money advice to help keep them on track and how to best invest their money to boost their savings.
But over the past year, when they were finally ready to buy, house prices shot up and their “perfect” home was no longer in reach.
According to The Times, The Bank of England has increased rates 14 times since December 2021, with the current level of 5.25%, with house prices 5.9% more expensive in 2022.
While they didn’t want to take up her parent’s offer of a loan, they had to accept, as even with all their saving efforts, they still fell short of the full £42,000 deposit needed.
She said: “Unfortunately, we couldn’t have gotten much without their help, which just goes to show how much it is now to buy a home.
“It’s worrying, especially for people of our age, as there’s no hope in sight with being able to own something of your own – so we’re left with really expensive rent.
“We’ve got to pay my parents back and we’re lucky enough to be in the position with our current jobs that we’re almost done with this.
“Even then, we still need to renovate the home, as anything newer wasn’t in our budget anymore.”
Now, they’re hoping to add value over the next ten years to their home with DIY work and making the property modern, alongside starting a family.
Her advice? Always start with a goal in mind and ensure to leave enough for additional fees.
Anya added: “I’d add on roughly £10,000 for solicitors fees and surveys – we had to spend an additional £8,000.
“Start looking at areas you would like to buy in and get an idea of what sort of property you want.
“Then, work out the minimum deposit needed.
“I think it shows great independence and determination if people are able to afford their own home – but this doesn’t minimise the achievement either way if they need a little help from mum and dad.”