At Home with ‘Help to Buy’

When Perth-born teacher Lucy Orr conveniently clinched a probationer’s post back in her home City after graduation, she took the popular step of moving back home with her parents.

However, once she secured a teaching job in 2013, it was time to fly the nest and Lucy (25) embarked on her search for a suitable rental property.

Lucy in her brand new Stephen home

Lucy in her brand new Stephen home

Like many prospective first-time buyers, Lucy soon realised that renting was not for her, feeling that the monthly outgoings were significant when there would be no long-term gain.

She therefore started exploring possible purchasing options and soon paid a visit to Stephen’s Balgarvie site in Scone, just a short journey from Perth city centre and her teaching job.  After initially viewing the show apartment, Lucy set her mind on the ‘Ben Cruachan’ and began investigating the different finance options open to her.

Lucy originally thought that the ‘Rent to Buy’ scheme would be best for her but, after Stephen’s sales staff put her in touch with Wendy Whyte at First Mortgage, it became clear that the ‘Help to Buy (Scotland)’ initiative was the best option. 

Lucy said, “We did the sums and the monthly mortgage prices were within my budget.  I was delighted and surprised to hear that it was actually going to be a lot less than renting an equivalent property, and it would also get me onto the property ladder.”

Furthermore, Lucy was pleasantly surprised at the ease of negotiating her ‘Help to Buy’ purchase.

She added, “Tapping into ‘Help to Buy’ was a very straightforward process for me. There were very few delays and everything went through at the right time.  Indeed, Wendy and I completed the paperwork side of things during just one Saturday morning appointment. Wendy explained the whole process to me and ensured that I understood what I was signing up to. As a first time buyer, the deposit was always going to be the pressure point as mortgage repayment affordability was not the real issue for me. Being able to ‘partner’ with the Scottish Government meant that my mortgage provider could lend with confidence. The Government was prepared to lend me up to 15% of the property value via an equity loan and I can repay that at any time and, most importantly, when it suits me financially, or if I were to sell the house.  Summing up, the initiative really helped me to be sitting in the house I now own!”

Lucy is also quick to praise the team at Stephen, adding, “Moving into my new home couldn’t have been any easier. My house was handed over in excellent condition and was absolutely spotless, resulting in a very simple move in. My ‘moving in’ pack from the company was also very useful and provided me with everything I needed to know. I would highly recommend buying a Stephen home, and also investigating the incentives out there which ultimately helped me make the move!”

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