Bucking The First-time Buyer Trend: Harlow Family ‘helped To Buy’ Their Forever Home
The Government’s ever-popular Help to Buy scheme is commonly confused as an initiative only available to first time buyers. In June 2017, it was revealed that 97,578 Help to Buy sales were made to first-time homeowners, representing 81 per cent of total sales for the second quarter of 2017.*
However, Harlow residents, Jennie (37) and Dean Rogers (42), along with their two children Josh (12) and Fletcher (10), belong to the slim 19 per cent of those that previously owned a property and made the most of the home-buying scheme.
Having previously lived in a three-bedroom mid-terraced house in Moorfield, Harlow, the Rogers nearly gave up on their hunt for a new-build after feeling defeated by the overpriced housing market.
Jennie recalls the long search the family endured for their dream home:
“As the boys got older we always knew we’d be looking to upsize, but we weren’t willing to settle for anything less than a house that really had the ‘wow factor’. We must have looked through hundreds online and viewed about four - five properties in person.
“Before approaching Linden Homes, my husband actually said he didn’t want to view any more new builds, believing we would never find the right property as everything seemed so expensive and totally the wrong size. Linden opened our eyes by informing us of the financial incentives that would enable us to buy our forever home at Edge, in Harlow.”
In the first half of 2017, Linden Homes saw almost 50 per cent of their homes purchased using Help to Buy, in comparison to 40 per cent of homes bought with the scheme in 2016.*
While the government-led scheme is known primarily for supporting first time buyers onto the property ladder, Jennie remembers the relief she and her family felt after looking to upsize for so long:
“Once we’d arranged the viewing, Dean kept telling me not to get my hopes up too much, as other new-builds we’d seen were a similar price but much smaller in size. But as soon as we saw our four-bedroom detached house at Edge, we fell in love with the development and the location, and I was able to say “I told you so” to Dean once again!”
Another bonus of buying with Linden meant the Rogers could make the most of the housebuilder’s Assisted Move initiative, in conjunction with the Government-led Help to Buy scheme:
“The sales team were so good and helped us every step of the way. If we didn’t understand anything, they were always on the end of the phone or available in the sales office.”
In exchange for the Rogers buying at Edge, Linden Homes bought and valued their current property, meaning that after years of house hunting the family could move into their new home without worrying about their existing one.
On top of the financial schemes available, there was a further benefit of moving to Edge for Mr and Mrs Rogers:
“One of the must-haves on our new home check-list was schools close to the property, especially as both our boys are nearing or at secondary school age. At Edge, there are 20 schools within a five-mile radius for us to choose from.”
In Newhall, Edge is extremely well-connected, just a 12 minute drive from The Harvey Centre in town and a seven-minute drive from Harlow Leisurezone. The Rogers will also benefit from Harlow’s recently completed First Avenue scheme, designed to reduce congestion and improve transport routes to the development.
Jennie says the experience of buying with Linden Homes was overwhelmingly positive:
“Even once we’d bought our home, the after-sales and customer service team were there to fix any snags or problems straight away. The company were there for us before, during and after the sale.
“All I can say is that every day we get home from work and still experience the ‘wow factor’ as we walk in. We truly feel so happy and lucky to have found our family home after searching for so long. We would recommend anyone on the hunt for a new house to enquire with Linden Homes, it’s such a supportive company and the team really did try everything they could to ensure our move happened.”
You can visit the sales and marketing suite on site at Edge. The suite is open every day from 10am – 5pm.
*Statistics taken from the Help to Buy Equity Loan Quarterly Statistics – June 2017. Available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/620987/HTB_EL_and_HTB_NewBuy_statistical_release.pdf
*Linden Homes official Help to Buy barometer.
23 November 2017