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Understanding the UK Property Market – A Guide to Buying

October 15, 2012

buying property in the uk

Buying a house can be an exciting time, as having your own home and space is something most people aspire to; however, if you are new to home buying it can also get very confusing. Worries such as getting the right mortgage or house prices falling affect most first-time buyers. With the right advice and support, however, you can find your perfect affordable home.

Buying a Property in 2012

According to the Halifax Building Society, house prices are expected to remain the same, with very little rise or fall, for the rest of 2012 and well into 2013. The average cost of a family home in England is currently around £160,000. If this is out of the range of your budget, there are still other options to allow you to own your own home.

Shared Ownership

If you cannot afford the mortgage on a home, shared ownership is an ideal option. Shared ownership is a system that enables you to buy a mortgage for a certain percentage of your home, usually between twenty-five and seventy-five per cent. The remainder is paid as rent to a housing association. This can make owning your own home much more affordable.

Later on, if you want to purchase more of your property, you can do so by arranging it with your housing association. They will find out the current value of your property and let you know how much it will cost to buy extra shares. You can continue until you fully own the property; however, you are not under any obligation to buy more shares.

Acquiring a Mortgage

Always ensure that your mortgage adviser is regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA). Before seeing a mortgage adviser you should work out what your budget is each month and how much you would be able afford in mortgage repayments. When working out your expenses you should make sure you include what you spend on food and going out as well as your regular monthly bills.

When you see your mortgage adviser, he will discuss a variety of plans and explain the details of each one. He will also give you a recommendation of what he feels is the best option for you. If you do not understand any aspect of his recommendation you should ask for clarification. Do not agree to anything that you have doubts about, or that you feel has not been fully explained to you.

Sophie works alongside Housetrade, a company that specialises in helping to bridge the gap between a buyer and their ideal home through offering advice on aspects such as shared ownership.

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