Sunday, 29 March 2015

Climbing on to the property ladder

When it comes to the property market, Ian and I have been pretty lucky. We got on the property ladder at just the right time, moving from Hampshire to Shropshire, where house prices were still within our reach. For the cost of a one bed flat down south, we upgraded to a family home with a garden in the Midlands. Pretty quickly, the value of our three bedroomed semi-detached home, more than doubled. A well timed move allowed us to purchase a brand new four bed detached house with a manageable mortgage. We have been here now for almost ten years.

house building, building site

The current economic climate and the uncertainty of Ian's employment has meant that we can't realistically contemplate moving again anytime soon, but we are pretty settled and the kids are happy here. We love the rural setting of where we live and we are within easy reach of our favourite city Manchester, where my girls live. The journey to Northampton, where my son and his family live, isn't too bad and we have got used to being long distance grandparents to our grandson Ted, making the journey down for special occasions and visits.

When it comes to my grown-up children, I can't imagine that they will have such an easy route to becoming homeowners as we did. House prices are much higher now and the amount of money needed for a deposit puts buying out of easy reach. The high cost of renting eats up the majority of their wages, leaving little left to be saved. However, more and more schemes appear to be springing up to help young people make the step towards home ownership. With a bit of effort, buying your first home is still achievable and I hope that one day they will be able to start the job of house hunting. Whether they are looking for a property for sale in Wiltshire, Northamptonshire, Manchester or even here in Shropshire, I hope they manage to find their place in the world where they will be just as happy as we are in our family home. Having to strive to get somewhere will definitely make them appreciate what they have got in the long term.

While I still might dream of owning a country house in view of Salisbury Plain with a big kitchen equipped with an island and a range cooker, a music room for Ian and a granny annexe for my parents,  I am happy to hold out until such a time that my six numbers come up on the Lotto. (just imagine if that actually happened - I could also sort out the kids with their first homes - how amazing would that be!?) In the meantime I will enjoy living here in our own little castle filled with love and laughter, and remember just how lucky we are to be in the position we are in. After all, there's no place like home.


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