For many young people, owning a home continues to be a major life goal. While buying a home is of course a big emotional decision, it is also a serious financial choice and can seem like a maze of pros and cons. Will it be worth it in the long run? Should you buy now or wait? What are your options to make it a sound financial decision?
We’ve rounded up some factors to think about if you’re considering making the leap onto the property ladder and investing in real estate at a young age.
The crunch point of investing in real estate at a young age is that you may not have the initial capital. If you don’t happen to have a pot of money set aside already, you’ll need to start saving. Decide on a percentage of your pay and be disciplined about putting this to one side; make economies where you can to speed up the process. It may seem limiting to your lifestyle at first, but in the long run you’ll be in a better and more flexible financial position.
What’s more, as you’re just starting out in your career, the chances are that your monthly earnings will increase and you’ll soon find yourself much more financially comfortable. The benefit of investing in real estate at a young age is that your monthly mortgage will stay the same even as your salary increases – and thus the future will look a lot rosier. The other thing that will most likely increase is the value of your property. If you own your property for long enough and are savvy with the market trends, you’re likely to reap the rewards.
While it’s not the case that you need to choose your ‘forever location’ right now, you do need to see yourself staying somewhere for a decent amount of time. This is so that you can build up equity before selling and moving on. However, if you do find yourself needing or wanting to move away before too long, you can always cover the rent on your new place by letting your current property, or you can buy-to-let from the start.
The earlier you get a mortgage, the sooner you stop paying someone else’s. The fact of renting is that you’re giving out a lot per month, and not seeing a long-term return. While having a mortgage still means monthly payments, the money you spend is building up solid equity of your own. All of this, and the likely increase in value of your property, means young homeowners can be in a great situation when it comes to buying a second home.
If you’ve decided you’re ready to be a young homeowner, there are plenty of practical tips to help you get started and find the property type that's right for you.