Home-Buyer Diary: 30-something couple in Hackney looking to get on the property ladder

We’re sharing stories of how other people have used Lifetise Homefinder to find their dream home.

We know how difficult it can be to find somewhere affordable that you actually want to live. That’s why we built Homefinder. We’ve also added a big red button on our interactive map that will take you to Zoopla and show you properties you can afford in the area you want to live – super easy!

In these posts you’ll see what people were looking for and precisely how they found it, with a video to show you how they did it all.

Hopefully this will be nice-and-easy to follow if you want to find a home yourself…

Maria & Cameron

First up we have a couple in their early 30’s currently renting in East London and looking to buy their first home together…

  • They earn £42k & £30k per year
  • Pay £900/month to rent their share of 2 bed flat in Hackney (E8)
  • They already have £10k towards a deposit and are willing to save another £700 per month to reach their goal

They want to know:

  • Where can they afford to buy a 1 or 2 bed flat close to where they already live?
  • How soon could they buy?
  • How will the mortgage compare to what they currently pay in rent?

So we recreated what they did and filmed it so you can see for yourself…

You watched it?

So what did we find out?

We were certainly able to give them answers…

Q: Where can we afford to buy a 1 or 2 bed flat in East London?      

  • With a joint mortgage and a 10% deposit they can afford to spend around £280k on buying a flat.
  • With this, there are some affordable 1 & 2 bed flats within their current postcode E8 (Hackney Central), though at the lower end of the quality scale.
  • In the next door Homerton (E9), Bow (E3) and Stratford (E15) they can get a much better choice of 1 & 2 bed flats within their price range.    
  • So the choice is theirs; buy where they currently live or move a little further out (and we mean a little) and snap up a better quality property for the same money.

Q: When can we buy?      

In two years time (September 2021) if both use a Lifetime ISA (LISA) to save for the rest of their deposit. If they don’t use LISAs it could take an additional 6 months to save up.

Q: What will our mortgage cost compared to what we currently pay for rent?  

Similar. They’re currently paying £900 per month in rent, based on current rates their mortgage repayments could be around £1,050 per month…so £150 per month more. Not bad for owning a whole flat rather than renting someone else’s room!

Of course they won’t know for sure until they’re about 6 months from being ready to buy, at which point they can get an ‘application-in-principle’ from a mortgage lender that will state their repayment amount.

They’ll also have the £700 per month left over they’d been using to save for the deposit. We recommend saving that, not least to pay for home maintenance, but they can enjoy it for a little while first!

Phew…So there you go, our first Home-Buyer Diary in the bag. Hopefully you found it useful and if you’d like to have a go yourself just visit Homefinder.

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