Harry and Tiegan's Story

Help to Buy is route to homeownership for one Aylesbury first time buyer couple

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Kingsfield Court

The recent Spring Budget revealed plans for major lenders to offer buyers government-backed 95% mortgages, offering access to low deposit homeownership across the country.[1] One first time buyer couple, Harry Adaway (23) and Tiegan Baldwin (22), had spent two years saving for a five per cent deposit and were able to get onto the property ladder at the end of last year thanks to Help to Buy. They purchased a two-bedroom apartment at Martin Grant Homes’ Kingsfield Court development in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.

Harry and Tiegan were living at home separately with their parents in Aylesbury, enabling them to save more each month than if they were renting. The couple also opened Help to Buy ISAs which gave them a 25% boost to their savings, which Harry and Tiegan were able to use to put towards furniture for their new apartment.

Harry, a car manufacturing engineer, comments: “We had been saving for a couple of years but thought we were still a long way off from being able to afford to buy a home. It wasn’t until we spoke to a mortgage adviser last summer that we realised that by using Help to Buy we could make the move sooner. As first time buyers, having access to a low deposit homebuying scheme was essential, and without it we would have found it impossible to buy anytime soon.

“We were fortunate to be able to live with parents whilst saving, but it still took us a while to save a five per cent deposit – if we had needed a bigger deposit, like most lenders have required over the past year, then it just wouldn’t have happened. We also ended up buying off-plan which gave us more time to save up for furniture and other bits for the home.”

Prior to the Chancellor’s Budget announcement, there were just five 95% mortgages available on the market in March 2021 – a significant drop from the 391 available just a year ago pre-pandemic.[2] The new mortgage guarantee scheme will be welcomed by buyers in a similar position to Harry and Tiegan who would otherwise struggle to save for a higher deposit.

Dean Markall, Sales and Marketing Director for Martin Grant Homes, comments: “Help to Buy has been essential for so many first time buyers, but is set to end in less than two years. As we look ahead to a post-Help to Buy landscape, the new government-backed 95% mortgages offer reassurance to first time buyers that they can still access homeownership with a low five per cent deposit. For many buyers, it is impossible to save for a larger deposit meaning that homeownership is out of reach. We welcome the new mortgages and hope they will support those who need it.”

Harry and Tiegan, an animal carer at a local wildlife centre, were keen to stay in Aylesbury due to family and friends living in the area. For them, the priority was finding an affordable new home in a good location – and Kingsfield Court ticks all of their boxes.

Harry adds: “We have friends that live in the wider Kingsfield Park development and were always really impressed by what they had access to in terms of green space. As first time buyers, we didn’t want the hassle of having to maintain a garden so it’s perfect that we can simply go outside and benefit from the open space on our doorstep.”

Aylesbury has been granted ‘Garden Town’ status and is receiving considerable Government funding for infrastructure and development. A new restaurant quarter, The Exchange, is being developed around a recently constructed public square, improving the already impressive facilities in the town that include a theatre, multi-screen cinema, live music venues and a swimming and fitness centre. The area also boasts a number of football, rugby and golf clubs.

Part of the appeal of Aylesbury is the access to green open spaces – both in and around the development itself and in the nearby Chiltern Hills area which can be explored on foot or by bike. The Aylesbury spur of the Grand Union Canal is also ideal for a stroll, while the easy road connections mean that a day trip to Bicester for shopping or Oxford for culture is easy and straightforward.

There are also two train stations in Aylesbury, Aylesbury Vale Parkway Rail Station and Aylesbury Rail Station, both of which are less than three miles away from the development and provide services to London Marylebone in one hour. Locations such as Oxford, High Wycombe and Hemel Hempstead are also just a short drive away.

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