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Can your deposit savings keep up with house prices?

As house prices continue to rise faster than wages, home buyers are feeling the pressure to buy before property values rise even higher. So what can you do to max your deposit?

Latest figures show the average house value is up 9% on a year ago. Halifax – which tracks price changes each month – has calculated the current average price to be £204,674.

If you were hoping to save up just 5% (usually the minimum you’ll need to get a mortgage), the average deposit now stands at £10,234. Of course to get lower interest rates – and therefore smaller monthly repayments – you’ll need even more money upfront.

If saving up tens of thousands of pounds feels like a daunting prospect, you aren’t alone. But there are some ways you can make the most of your current savings.

Here are our four top ways to boost your deposit and buy before prices rise even more.

Help to Buy loans

You don’t need to be a first time buyer to get a Help to Buy loan, which offers up to 20% of the property value as a loan – as long as it is a new build home. The first five years are interest free. After that, a yearly fee kicks in.

To take advantage of this scheme you need to have a 5% deposit saved up, and the house you’re buying must be your only home.

Help to Buy mortgages

Another option is to apply for a Help to Buy mortgage. It’s different to the loan scheme as here the government guarantees the mortgage lender 15% of the property price if you default. Again, you’ll need a 5% deposit.

Shared ownership

With shared ownership, you buy part of a property and pay rent on the rest. This will lower the size of the deposit you need. Priority is usually given to anyone who currently rents a council or housing association property.

Buy with someone else

Whether it's with your partner, parent or friend, buying with someone else means there are more people putting cash towards that all-important deposit. Just make sure you have a plan in place if one of you wants to sell their share.

 

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