After finding that new job, making sure you have the house of your dreams could well be the next thing to tick off your ‘to do’ list.
If you’ve been renting for a while you might well be thinking about putting a first foot on the property ladder. After all, why keep paying out to landlords when that hard-earned cash could be going towards paying a mortgage and you one day owning a property outright?
You reckon you could save some money each month towards a deposit but how long do you think it might take to save up enough to make an offer, secure a mortgage and buy your first home? Two years? Five years? How about 14?
Yes, if you live in wealthy Winchester, a national survey reckons that it will take the average worker 14 YEARS of slogging away before they can afford to buy their first property.
And young families and working couples are the hardest hit. In an area where social housing is limited and private rents can be high, buying a home of their own can become an unattainable dream for many workers.
And with lenders tightening up on their borrowing criteria in the wake of the financial downturn and being pretty strict on keeping lending terms under 30 years (although some will lend past your retirement age) you really need to start saving in your early 20s. But with the emphasis on also putting money into a pension plan from a similar age, is you current salary sufficient?
Housing charity Shelter commissioned the survey and, using figures from the Office for National Statistics, looked at average weekly wages for people with a job and living in Winchester, and the average price of a house in Winchester.
The average weekly wage in Winchester is £613.70 which is £92.90 more than the national average and £46.70 higher than London and the rest of the south east.
That’s all well and good, until you discover that the average house price in the area is a whopping £430,700. And that’s why it can take more than a decade to be in a position financially where you can start browsing round the city’s estate agents.
The survey broke its results down into categories of single people, couples without children and couples with one child.
In Winchester one of the starkest figures shows that it will take, on average, a single working female on a weekly salary of around £570, nine years to buy a flat and 23 years to buy a detached home in the city. Can you ensure the salary from your job in Winchester will allow you to buy your home? Or is it time to start looking for another position?
Perhaps it’s time to think about a move and earning that bit extra so you can finally afford your first home.