We were first time buyers when we bought our house in late 2012. It took a lot of savings to get a decent house deposit together so that we could buy the house we wanted. We didn’t want to borrow the maximum amount the bank would lend us because we didn’t want to stretch ourselves too far. I thought I’d share some of the strategies we used to help us get onto the property ladder.
First of all, we set ourselves a target amount. We set ourselves 3 initial targets – a minimum we would need, a sensible target and a dream target. In the end, we reached our dream target in terms of a house deposit. Again, we didn’t want to stretch ourselves too far, but we also knew what we wanted.
The next thing we did was work out a budget and a timescale for our plans. We knew that we wanted to buy our own house, didn’t want to wait forever, but knew it would take time. We initially aimed for May 2012, after our wedding, but due to a change in circumstances, it took a little longer. We then worked out how many months away that was and divided the total amount needed by the number of months. That gave us the number we needed to save each month to reach our target.
Once we had a savings number in mind, we did a new budget which included that number. In order to consistently achieve the savings number, we needed to be pretty strict with other aspects of our budget. But we knew that the short term sacrifices would be worth it in the long run.
The third thing we did was to make sure the money we were saving was working for us. After all, we were working hard and saving that hard earned money, we needed it to work for us too. So, we looked through the best instant access accounts at the time, and made sure our money was safely secure in one of those. After all, any interest at all on top of what we were saving was much better than nothing.
The last thing that we made sure of was that we paid ourselves first. Every payday, we transferred the amount we specified before into savings, and then budgeted the rest. That made sure we saved and didn’t find ourselves short at the end of the month.
The amount we managed to save in total? £35,000.00 (approx. $59,000.00)
That doesn’t include the extra we saved to pay all of the fees and moving costs. We saved another £5,000 to cover all costs, including some new things for the house like a dining table, washing machine and tumble dryer.
How did you save for your house deposit? Any tips for first time buyers? Please comment below!
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