Things to consider if you are a first time buyer

Tips that all first time buyers should know

In 2016, the average first time buyer deposit was £33,960 (Halifax, 2016) – a daunting goal. There are other types of mortgages available that require smaller deposits – however, they will generally have higher rates of interest.

The government currently still offers the Help to Buy Scheme, which allows buyers of both new and existing homes to purchase a property with just a 5% deposit, with the lender then able to buy a guarantee from the Government covering up to 15% of the property value.

Speak to one of our Independent mortgage advisers to find the best deal to suit your needs.

Be realistic about what you can afford

As a first-time buyer, this is one of the most important things to take into consideration. It's easy for any of us to get carried away and convince ourselves that we can afford that little bit more for a property that's bigger/has a garden/is next to the shop.

Make sure you add up all your monthly outgoings, taking into account how much you'll need for extras like trips to the cinema etc., to work out exactly what you can afford to repay each month.

The Bank of England recently introduced restrictions on mortgage lending, and from October, loans above 4.5 times a buyer's income can only make up 15% of a lender's new lending (Bank of England, 2014). You should therefore expect stricter checks when you apply for a mortgage.


First-time buying is all about the art of the compromise. If you hold out for your dream, you're likely to be waiting for a long time. Try considering a property that needs a bit of work, or is slightly further from local transport than you had planned.

Deciding what you’re prepared to compromise on is an essential step, as you're unlikely to get everything you want at a price you can afford.

View properties you're not sure about

Nothing can beat visiting a property and seeing it for yourself. If you discount properties which meet many of your requirements, simply because you don't like the way they look, you could be missing out.

House hunting is all about the 'feeling' a property gives you and sometimes that doesn't translate into pictures. Try to find time to visit properties that have what you need on paper – you might find that what you want isn't quite what you originally expected.

Look to the future

Consider moving to up-and-coming areas, rather than stretching your budget to live in areas that are already 'there'. If local authorities are planning to spend a large amount of money on an area, and new facilities such as housing and schools are being built, then local property prices are likely to rise and it could be a good investment of your money.

Look out for lots of new building activity, new transport links and an influx of shops and restaurants

Instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf

Once your offer has been agreed, it's essential that you instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf, so that they can deal with all the legal bits, help you to avoid potential problems and protect your interests.

To get further get ahead of other buyers, we recommend you instruct a solicitor at the start of your house-hunt, rather than wait until your offer is accepted. This is part of the process of getting market ready

Find out more about our Homemover Conveyancing Service.

Buying your first property is difficult but if you play your cards right it's not impossible. With a little determination, more and more first time buyers are achieving the dream of owning their own home.

Here at Andrews, we have the expertise to make your first property purchase run smoothly. To find out more about what we could do for you visit our ’Buying Property’ page.

We don’t charge for our advice. Instead, we simply charge a fee for processing your mortgage application. Our typical fee is £450; however the actual fee will depend on your circumstances.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.