Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Standing on your own two feet

It's still true to say that at 27 I have only one close friend who bought their own property without help from their parents/ grandparents or their partners family. That person works in banking.

I fully understand family who can help their children to have a roof over their heads and not be mortgaged to the hilt wanting to do so and don't have an issue with it.

(I do have quite a serious issue with those lucky people who have had help either bragging about how well they have done to get themselves on the property ladder and/ or talking about how stupid people are for renting but that is another issue! and parents who think the children you helped don't do that, think again I promise you they really do)

No my point is that really it's quite scandalous that these people, mostly couples, so two income mortgage applicants, all graduates, all with well paid jobs- all of these people basically could not have bought their one and two bedroom flats without very serious cash injections. These aren't all people who live in South West London or Islington either, they are out in Surrey (not prime Surrey), out in zone 5 or 6, all sorts of areas. Sure I'm sure they could all have saved better if Mummy and Daddy hadn't stumped up 100k but equally to be fair none of them are designer clad money wasters at all. It's just that they couldn't have bought without the help and where does that leave the people without help.

I am realistic and know that some people always got a measure of help to get on the property ladder but really did they have to get the value of a house in Sheffield plus a huge mortgage in the past. Probably not.

Now prices are falling a little it's true but the mortgage companies have gone so far the other way with their lending that ironically it's now even more important to have a very hefty deposit and in a way people who don't have access to a cash lump sum are worse off than they were before.

I have thought quite a lot (quite a lot!) about what I would do if I was given a lump sum I hadn't worked for. For sure I would take it very gladly and happily. Would I feel as much of a sense of worth about looking at places with that extra money? probably not. Would I care that I had lost that sense of worth? Probably not!

But really it's wrong that people are missing out on the feeling of being a grown up and having to ask Mum and Dad for a new flat isn't so different to being 12 and wanting the latest trainers. It's totally out of control if they will say yes or not and you feel powerless.

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