for borrowers

First Time Buyers – this guide is for you!

Help from The Cambridge when you're buying your first home.

There is nothing like the excitement of buying your first home, but before you get the keys to the door there are plenty of things to consider. This guide will help you understand how you can achieve your home ownership dreams, whether you've already got your hard-saved deposit or you want to explore the different opportunities available through home ownership schemes.


Saving for your deposit

When you buy a home, you’ll need to give a deposit which will pay for a percentage of equity in the property. The average deposit of a first time buyer is a staggering £43,433 (published online by Money Super Market).

This can lead people to dread saving for a deposit and assume the task is impossible. However, it isn’t the case, let’s break it down:

How much can you save?

Look closely at your current spending to see where you could make savings.

Do you make the most of cashback offers? Buy One Get One Free (BOGOF) or loyalty schemes are great (as long as you were planning on making the purchase in the first place).


Work out your bills and outgoings on a monthly basis, determining the essentials and then save what’s left over from your income.

How long?

Once you’ve worked out how much you can afford, it should be easier to calculate how long it will take you to get there. This also depends on how much deposit you’re planning to save; many First Time Buyers believe that a 10% deposit is required to buy a house but this isn’t true. Various lenders including The Cambridge offer mortgages that only need a 5% deposit

The right savings account

Now you know how long saving will take you, you’ll have an indication of what account will be best for your needs.

Now set up a standing order

Setting up a standing order to pay a set amount from your current account into your savings account will help saving become a habit!

These are just a few ways to encourage saving, sometimes you have to make the most of every opportunity. For more information on savings, read our guide.


Considering the length of your mortgage

Mortgages are a long term commitment and can be taken out for various terms, anywhere between 5 to 40 years, dependent on the individual mortgage needs. However it is important that as a First Time Buyer you and your Mortgage Adviser decide on a term that is right for you and your individual circumstances.

At The Cambridge, we offer a maximum lending term of 40 years on all of our mortgages. For First Time Buyers, this gives you more affordable monthly payments as generally a longer term allows for smaller monthly repayments. This length of term coupled with a 5% deposit, for example, could help you get onto the property ladder. However, the longer the term of the mortgage, the more interest you will pay in total.


Affordable home ownership schemes

Buying your first home in today’s property market is not easy. For many, Government backed, affordable home ownership schemes are simply the best way to get onto the property ladder, so what are they and how can they help you?

Shared Ownership

Shared Ownership is a type of residential property buying scheme that allows you to part-buy, part-rent a home in the UK. The scheme works by you purchasing a percentage (also known as a share) of a property, for example 50%, and the housing association owns the other 50% which you then pay rent on. Some schemes offer first time buyers the possibility to buy a home in stages because their circumstances mean they cannot afford to buy a property on the general market on their own.

For more information on Shared Ownership such as eligibility and staircasing, read our guide.

Right to Buy

For council tenants who have the chance to buy their house at a discounted price, we can lend up to 100% of the discounted price.

Find out if you are eligible to apply to buy your council home on the website where you can also find out about the level of discounts available, how to apply and information on all agencies that can help you.


Dreams to schemes - your next steps

Once you have worked out the best way for you to buy your first home, you will need to consider the home buying journey. Read our ‘Buying your Home: Step by Step guide’ for useful information on everything from house hunting, surveys and finding the right solicitor, right up to completion and getting the keys.


We’re always ready to help 

We hope we’ve answered many of your questions. Your Mortgage Adviser is ready and waiting, and you can book an appointment with them online. If you've still got questions call us today 0345 601 3344.


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