*If you are thinking about buying a house, then this is a collaborative post that might be helpful*
Buying a house is a topic we as a family have discussed often. We currently rent, but as we all know, life changes and plans made sometimes don’t happen.
In the past few months the financial markets, housing market and people’s plans to move home, or buy a home have been impacted as the world reels from the effects of a pandemic. I don’t think anyone could have planned for something like that or imagined what it would do to all our lives. It can feel a bit like a game of Monopoly sometimes.
We have two plans that we hold loosely for our future and both would involve property investment or buying a house of some sort.
Invest in a property abroad. We plan to move out of the UK when our children have finished their initial education time here, so we would like to think about buying a small property abroad that we could have as a holiday home, or to be rented out to bring in some income until we are ready to move. Buying a property abroad can be done, and many people do that, successfully, but we are aware that it does take a lot of work, particularly if you are dealing with a system that works differently to the UK. Banks, finances, residential permits, legal rules, and many other things need to be negotiated. It’s not a simple process but we have several friends who have done it successfully, so we are very open to trying this ourselves.
Our other option would be to buy an investment property in the UK to earn us income. It won’t be a property we would live in. We currently live in London, and property prices are mostly out of our affordability range and we also don’t want to leave London whilst our children are still in the education system. But we have a friend who has very successfully bought and managed properties in other parts of the country as an investment and this is an option we are very open to.
In all of this, the one thing we have had to think hard about is what we can afford and budget for, to invest in any kind of property. Using a mortgage calculator has been very helpful to give us an idea of what we could manage and is helping us to work towards either plan. We still need to be able to live our day to day, pay bills, cover costs etc, whilst saving for our dream and retirement. It has helped us to see what we can and can’t afford so our plans are more realistic and not just a pipe dream we can’t pull off.
It is a lot to think about and plan for and we know that life can change unexpectedly either in a good or bad way, that can mean plans and hopes have to be reevaluated. But if you have a basic idea of your long term goals, and have good advice and plan wisely, then even if life does throw something at you that you didn’t see coming, you can still manage to look to the future in a positive light.
For now, we are waiting to see what the world does and how life looks, and so far thinking about buying a house is as far as we have got, we are not ready to make any major decisions, yet, but in the back of our minds we know what we want and we are working towards that whatever life throws at us.