A better year for first-time buyers
LOCAL estate agent Connells is already seeing some encouraging signs that 2013 will be a better year for first-time buyers to get on the housing ladder.
"Over the past few years property prices have generally not kept pace with inflation and there are currently a wide range of homes available at very attractive prices from sellers who are committed to moving," says Russell Brighton of Connells in Plymouth.
The main problem faced by first-time buyers in recent times has been getting a mortgage and raising the sort of large deposit demanded by lenders.
Now however, as the Government's Funding for Lending scheme starts to have an impact, lending restrictions are easing and we are even seeing the return of 95 per cent loan to value products.
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With interest rates at a historically low level, monthly mortgage payments can usually work out cheaper than renting.
Many new homes developers are offering shared ownership or shared equity incentives to assist those who are unable to put down a hefty deposit.
For instance, the Government-backed FirstBuy scheme provides eligible first-time buyers with up to 20 per cent of the value of the property they want to buy in the form of an equity loan.
Buyers need only save for a five per cent deposit with the remaining 75 per cent of the balance paid for with a conventional mortgage, giving them access to more favourable rates.
"Connells has expert knowledge of all these incentives and we are more than happy to explain them in detail and let customers know which of them are available at new homes developments in this area," said Russell.
"We are also now seeing a much larger volume of second-hand property coming onto our books so, with more choice available, now is definitely the time to be getting on the ladder.
"In the current housing market we appreciate it is difficult for first-time buyers to purchase their home but it's not impossible.
"Whatever your circumstances it's well worth contacting us to find out the available options. You might be very pleasantly surprised!"
Contact Connells on 01752 664357.