Lovell’s new Telford development, The Oaklands, is a superb collection of two- and three-bedroom houses ideal for first time buyers.
So, to help those new to the process get ahead, the company’s field sales manager, Michelle Barnsley, shares her top tips to getting on the ladder.
- Starting out: Get your own house in order
The first thing any first time buyer should be thinking about is their likeliness to be granted a mortgage from a lender by looking at their credit score.
Agencies such as Clearscore and Experian offer free online credit reporting tools that let people know where they are and where they will need to be before even beginning to contemplate a mortgage application.
A simple way to improve a score is to make sure all existing bills are paid. It sounds elementary, but it is so often missed that it needs mentioning. Having outstanding balances on any accounts, be it phone contracts, utilities bills or broadband, is the first way to make sure a score is negatively affected.
- Laying the foundations: Getting enough deposit together
The more deposit one puts down on a first home, the more likely a mortgage approval is and the better the deal offered is. Saving, then, is a necessity, which obviously means a few lifestyle tweaks are too.
Cutting back on frivolous monthly outgoings, such as taking packed lunches to work and cutting out morning coffees are great ways to save extra money without needing to make wholesale lifestyle changes. Working under the proviso that a morning coffee and a shop/deli bought lunch amounts to £6 per day means cutting them out could save £1,440 in one calendar year, working on a 48 week basis.
Switching to budget supermarkets, fewer meals out and fewer Friday night pub visits can also save valuable money.
A mortgage is a commitment, and saving for a deposit for one is something that requires the same level of commitment.
- Assessing the lay of the land: Work out your options diligently
An important part of the first timer process is seeing what options are available. Good solicitors and mortgage brokers are a must and Lovell only recommends accredited independents who already understand Lovell developments.
Looking at what schemes are in place for first timers is also a must. Help to Buy: Equity Loan, for example, is a national scheme that allows buyers to borrow directly from the Government and put down a deposit of just 5%.
With prices currently starting at £132,950, a deposit of £6,647.50 would be needed to secure a two-bedroom property at The Oaklands with the Help to Buy: Equity Loan.
- Building blocks: Staying patient
It’s important to remember that with a very large transaction such as buying a first home, it will not happen overnight. Thankfully, however, buying one of Lovell’s new homes at The Oaklands is a far simpler process than buying a second hand property.
New build properties are always less stress for first time buyers as the chain begins with them and ends with the builder.
- Finishing off: What to do once you’ve exchanged
The final tip to keep in mind as a first time buyer at The Oaklands is that there will be a few things to put in place to make sure the new home is exactly how you like it.
Setting up broadband and arranging energy suppliers can be done in advance. Getting onto the local electoral roll and setting up council tax, TV licence and notifying institutions like banks and employers of a new address can also be taken care of quickly and easily.
A checklist of to-dos is a handy way of keeping on top of these things.
For more information about the new homes available at The Oaklands, Matlock Avenue call 01952 700 431. Or alternatively, email the sales team at firstname.lastname@example.org.