Over the past few years, things have gotten fairly tricky for first time buyers. Wages are being frozen, the cost of living is going up, and it now seems more expensive than ever to get your foot on the property ladder. On top of that, mortgages are much harder to come by, with some lenders requiring sizeable deposits that are beyond the reach of many people. However, all is not lost. With a little bit of savvy searching, you might just be able to find a suitable candidate for your first home, that won’t stretch your finances to the limit.
Crucially, you have to be prepared to lower your expectations. First time buyers often make the mistake of looking for a property that they can move into immediately, with the intention of staying there for a number of years. This is perfectly understandable, as many people looking for their first home are used to living in well-kept rental accommodation. Factor in the time and expense of buying, which can be draining if you’ve never done it before, and it’s easy to see why you wouldn’t want to do it again for as long as humanly possible! However, if you’re prepared to be flexible in your approach, you might find that it’s much easier to get on the property ladder than you first thought.
If you want to get the best deal possible, the first step is to change the way you think. Instead of a home, it’s a good idea to think of property as an asset, which can increase and decrease in value. If you’re prepared to invest money into extensive renovation, then you can usually make a tidy profit on a run-down property in need of a bit of love. You’ll be going up against builders and developers, but as your profit margins don’t need to be as high as theirs, you’ll be better placed to table the best bid. Aside from the state of the property itself, the location will be crucial to the price. You might fancy buying in a fashionable area, but the fact is that you’ll be paying more for what you get. If you can find a run-down property in an area outside of the cool part of town, but also quite close to it, you’ve got a great chance of watching the value sky-rocket in a few years’ time.
Ultimately, it’s uncommon for first time buyers to stay in their first home for more than a few years. If you start thinking long-term, you’ll have a much better chance of getting on the ladder without crippling your finances!