I am due to enter my final year of university in September, and the impending sense of being thrown out into the big bad world has me thinking about job prospects and my future. I’m studying Adult Nursing, so it’s likely I’ll never struggle to find a job given how short-staffed the NHS is. However, looking at the salary I expect to get has me wondering if I’ll ever be able to afford my own place, and how Covid-19 has affected the housing market.
According to The Guardian, the average house price in the UK is now £333, 564. This makes the average deposit £57, 278. Wow. As a student, that seems like an insane amount of money to me, and really unachievable.
As a first time buyer, I would obviously expect to buy a cheaper house than the UK average, however I am truly clueless when it comes to mortgages, real estates, and all the costs associated with buying a house. I was recommended Mortgage Calculator UK to give an unbiased calculation of what to expect from a mortgage, and I found it really simple and easy to use. They even have a section to calculate what mortgage repayments you can afford based on your salary, which was awesome as I know what I’ll make as a Nurse since the NHS has standardised payment bands.
Using the average house price and deposit figures above, I was able to look at what to expect from an average rate mortgage. You can check out my calculation here. What I really loved was that you can adjust the deposit price, interest rate, and the length of the mortgage. I feel like it’s really prepared me for looking at the housing market. Obviously, saving for a deposit is still going to be super hard, but knowing what to expect when I have enough for a deposit has really put my mind at ease.
I would have expected housing prices to plummet during the Covid-19 pandemic, however Which reports that house prices actually increased due to a government cut in stamp duty. Stamp duty land tax is a proportionate tax based on the property price. Yet another (sort of) hidden cost of buying a house. When I was younger, I very naively assumed buying a house meant getting a loan from a bank, finding somewhere you liked, and voila. How wrong I was.
Right now, with student debt, I feel like having a place of my own it a pipe dream. I’m incredibly lucky that my parents will always keep a roof over my head, so I don’t have to worry about renting and also trying to save for a deposit. But even then, 5% or more of the cost of a house as a deposit seems so unrealistic for many young people today.
I absolutely love interior design and I hope that someday I can own my own home – a space to really make mine.
Until next time,