Struggling First-Time Buyers Juggle Multiple Jobs, Saving £20,000, But Rely on “Bank of Mum and Dad” for Home Purchase

A young couple has shared their challenging journey as first-time homebuyers, highlighting the increasingly difficult task of entering the property market without assistance from their parents.

Anya Clements and Calum Jones, aged 22 and 27, embarked on the path of purchasing their first home with a mixture of excitement and trepidation. As interest rates began to rise, their dreams of homeownership seemed to slip out of reach.

The couple, whose budget stood at £250,000, found themselves facing limited options within their financial constraints. In a determined effort to achieve their goal, Anya, a children’s nurse, and Calum, a member of the Welsh Parliament, took on a total of seven jobs between them, relocated two hours away from their families, and tightened their spending habits, including avoiding dining out.

After four years of diligent saving, they amassed £20,000. Eventually, they moved into their new semi-detached home featuring four bedrooms and two bathrooms, at a cost of £295,000. However, they assert that relying solely on their own savings without parental assistance is no longer a feasible option.

“In the current climate, it’s almost impossible for individuals to enter the property market without external support,” Anya, hailing from Cardiff, Wales, shared with NeedToKnow.co.uk.

“If people are fortunate enough to receive help from their parents, it can be a beneficial avenue to explore, as it facilitates market entry. Nonetheless, I would always encourage individuals to attempt self-sufficiency and avoid leaning on their parents, unless the offer is extended, as it is a significant commitment.”

Anya and Calum initially aimed to acquire a three-bedroom detached house, recognizing several options within their budget. They adopted a strategy of contributing £200 per month to a Help to Buy ISA, a government scheme that has since concluded, promising a supplementary 20% loan. They also followed financial advice from Martin Lewis to optimize their investments and savings.

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However, as the past year unfolded, rapid increases in house prices resulted in their ideal home slipping out of their financial grasp.

Amid the rise in interest rates – The Bank of England has elevated rates 14 times since December 2021, currently standing at 5.25% – and a 5.9% surge in house prices in 2022, Anya and Calum found themselves unable to secure their desired property even with their earnest saving efforts.

Ultimately, they accepted their parents’ offer of financial aid, as their combined savings still fell short of the required £42,000 deposit.

“Regrettably, we wouldn’t have been able to proceed without their assistance, underscoring the substantial cost of homeownership today,” Anya lamented.

Looking ahead, they intend to enhance their property’s value through DIY projects and modernization over the next decade, all while starting a family.

Anya’s advice to prospective first-time buyers is to establish clear goals, accounting for additional expenses. She suggests factoring in approximately £10,000 for solicitors’ fees and surveys, as unforeseen costs arose, totaling an additional £8,000 in their case.

“I believe achieving homeownership showcases remarkable independence and determination, regardless of whether some support is needed from parents,” Anya concluded.