Buying your first home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make – and it can also be the most expensive.
There are a few ways to cut costs as a first-time buyer and to get around all those pesky extra charges. If you’re looking into buying your first home, here are a few ways to reduce the price tag.
Compare the market
Don’t go with the first mortgage company/insurance company you find. As a first time buyer, you hold all the power, and you don’t need to go with just anyone. Visit a mortgage advisor and see what your options are, checking which company will give you the best loan and the most promising interest rate. Talk to your advisor about fixed versus adjustable rates and see which one will save you the most money in the long run.
Help to Buy
Take advantage of the Help to Buy scheme run by the government. Right now for first-time buyers, you can be eligible to own your own home with just a 5% deposit. The Help to Buy equity loan means the government will pay 20% of your property, so you only need to obtain a 75% mortgage to make up the rest. After five years of owning your home you’ll need to start paying back the loan. You could also participate in the Shared Ownership Scheme where you can purchase a share of your home and pay rent on the remaining amount.
Monitor those utilities
Never just accept an estimated gas reading bill again and get a smart meter installed at no extra cost. Smart meters come with an in-home display screen where you can see exactly how much gas and electricity you’re using down to the very pence. This way you can make sure you’re getting more bang for your buck and not being overcharged on your bills.
Go second hand
A practical way to save money in your new home is to learn how to up-cycle. This modern phrase means buying something second hand and then sprucing it up to increase its value and make it look great in your home. Websites like Gumtree, Freecycle and Shpock can help you find used items in your neighbourhood for half the price of what you could get new. Then get your interior decorator hat on and enjoy sanding, reupholstering, and painting to your heart’s content.
Look over your budget
Buying a new house is as good a time as any to look over your monthly budget and overall spending habits. One helpful way is to put together a spreadsheet and write down all of your outgoing bills – that way you’ll know exactly how much you’ll have at the end of every month. Make allowances for savings and extra spending like going out to eat. You can also save money in your new home by checking out the different utility providers to see who will give you the best deal, as well as cutting back on non-essentials like takeaways.
It’s no wonder people get stressed over buying their first home, there’s a lot to think about. Hopefully with these helpful tips getting onto the property ladder will be a little less daunting, and you’ll have a few extra pounds to rub together when it’s all said and done.