We finally did it, we purchased a 3 bedroom house at the end of January 2018 and I couldn’t be prouder of ourselves!
By no means has it been an easy journey I actually found that planning a Wedding was less stressful! Saying that, we did somehow manage to get Married and buy our house all in the space of 4 months no wonder I have been so busy!
I thought I’d share with you all some of the things we did to help us save towards owning our own home.
Have a goal in mind
It’s important to have an idea of how much you need to save. Have a look at Right Move/Zoopla and have a look at house prices and remember to be realistic. We filled out one of the mortgage calculators with our earning to get a rough guide about how much we needed to save for a deposit. Our parents were really helpful with giving us rough prices for all of the fees we would have to pay on top of the deposit and this really made us feel less able to ever buy a house but with their help we were able to manage our finances much better!
Multiple bank accounts
Ross and I both set up an Help To Buy Isa, we just wish we had opened sooner as on completion of our house we got some cash back. The more you save the more cash back you earn, we both had an account each so that was double the cash back! There are some terms to opening an Help to Buy Isa which are you must be a first time buyer, you have a limit of putting £200 a month in and once you reach over £12,000 you maximum cash back is £3000. You need to have saved over £1,600 to get a 25% cash back from your account.
We also had a joint account to put additional savings in due to the £200 limit so we could put any other money aside we wanted to save and it was clear to see how much we had saved overall as we had all of our bank accounts with one bank only.
Change the way you shop
I have always been somewhat of a bargain hunter which came in my favour when it came to saving. I made weekly meal plans, which cut our shopping bill down as I only brought what was on my list. I set myself a clothing allowance, only buying clothing when necessary or sticking to a £30 a month budget. Sometimes I wouldn’t spend any money on clothes so that extra money was put into our joint account at the end of the month.
Remember it doesn’t happen overnight
Says me, I can be such an impatient person so telling myself this was a mission in itself but it’s so true it can’t happen overnight and it’s a big commitment as well as a big lump sum of money to save. Ross and I had been renting a small one bedroom house for 3 and a half years and we always had in mind that we wanted to buy our own home one day. I will never regret renting first as for us personally it gave us that idea of being together 24/7 before truly committing ourselves to a property.
When we started renting we almost immediately started saving and we had planned to be in our own home 2 years later on. But life got in the way, in an exciting way I must add! Ross got down on one knee and proposed back in 2015 which kind of put a spanner in the works, we had save a considerable amount of money but then we were faced with a Wedding pay for as well as wanting to buy a house. We both agreed to get married first and postpone moving out, suddenly we saw lots of our hard earned savings being paid to numerous wedding bills and it was heartbreaking in a way. With having two BIG things to pay for we had to budget that bit more to be able to save for both of the things we wanted and it was a HARD year but it was all totally worth it to be able to be sat here today writing this post about how we got there.
The biggest piece of advice I could ever give is it’s IMPORTANT to not cut back on everything, enjoy life otherwise it will take all the fun out of the next chapter. Go out for the occasional meal, have that take away or go away for the weekend. Life is for making memories after all.
3 Years 7 Months later and we have moved onto our next chapter. I hope in some way you have found this post helpful and if you ever want some advice feel free to get in touch with me.