Recent figures reveal just how hard the recession has hit struggling first time buyers, with around 80 per cent buyers in this bracket having help with a deposit and the average age purchasing without assistance having risen sharply since 2007 to 37*. Some young buyers, however, are already well ahead in the property game and are taking the opportunity to upsize before property prices really start to rise.
Lewis Hamm, 23, bucked the trend and bought his first property at the age of 19 and, with his new wife, Sarah, has recently capitalised on lower house prices and upsized to a three bedroom house at Crest Nicholson’s popular Chelmsford development, Clarion Gate.
Lewis, an investment banker, comments: “I went straight into the workplace, rather than going to university which has worked out extremely well for me. We started earning money younger than many and were therefore able to save up a deposit and, with help from our parents, get a foot on the property ladder much earlier than some of our friends. Having recently got married, Sarah and I decided it was time to upsize to a bigger property that would give us the space we need to eventually start a family and we both saw the recession as an opportunity to get more for our money than we would have done previously.
“We were looking at new build properties in various towns in Essex but weren’t very impressed by the design of many of the homes and felt that the rooms were a bit on the small side. When we visited Clarion Gate all of our concerns disappeared. We were very impressed by the design, space and build quality and bought a house with a large garden, which is perfect for our dog.”
Lewis continues: “Chelmsford is a vibrant town with lots going on. The commuter links are great for me, as I work in the City, and there are plenty of good local schools for when we start a family. We’re really happy here and see the property as a great investment as we plan on being here for the next seven to 10 years.”
Clarion Gate, located on Beehive Lane, Great Baddow, comprises an elegant collection of 153 traditional and contemporary styled one and two bedroom apartments and two, three and four bedroom houses. In keeping with the local surroundings, when complete the scheme will be laid out across two complimentary, yet distinctive areas called The Village Green and The Avenues built around a newly formed village green.
The development benefits from excellent transport links; Chelmsford Station, two miles away, offers regular services to London Liverpool Street in around 35 minutes, while the nearby A12 provides routes south to the Capital and north to Colchester.
Prices for a four bedroom houses at Clarion Gate start from £355,000 and one bedroom apartments are from £162,500. For further information about buying a home at Clarion Gate please contact 0870 757 8184. Alternatively, visit the Crest Nicholson website at: www.crestnicholson.com
*Council of Mortgage Lenders