First-Time Mortgage Advice: 7 Super Ways to Save

Getting onto the property ladder is rarely simple. Mortgages for first-time buyers, for example, require commitment and saving, much like so many other aspects of owning a property. However, with some smart budgeting and utilising government schemes, it is possible to save for your first mortgage and have the joy and benefits of owning your own home.

As it can be such a precarious thing to keep track of, some first-time mortgage advice is always helpful, so here are seven smart ways to save for your first mortgage that any soon-to-be homeowner should stick to.


  1. Budget and Start Saving Straight Away

You need to be committed to wanting a mortgage. This means holding back on any other large purchases, such as a car or even a holiday, unless absolutely necessary. Look at your expenses to see what could easily be cut down on, or eliminated altogether. Budgeting is crucial when it comes to saving for a mortgage; limiting those simple luxuries such as hair appointments and those regular Friday night drinks can make a big difference overall. It’s important to note that you need at least 5% of the property value for a deposit.

However, putting down up to 25% will give you more flexibility on mortgages and property. Aim for an amount closer to 25% in your budget and you’re more likely to save a strong amount of money to get you started.


  1. Use a Help to Buy ISA

If you’re saving for a mortgage and not already using the Help to Buy ISA, you need to do so right now.

There are a number of banks and building societies that offer the ISA, which is specifically for mortgages for first-time buyers. The government will boost your savings up to 25%, with a maximum of £3,000. To receive the full £3000, you will need to have saved £12000. The scheme can make a huge difference when saving for a mortgage and, as money-saving expert Martin Lewis says, “it’s a no-brainer.”


  1. Repay any Outstanding Debt

Any mortgage provider will look at whether you have any outstanding debt such as overdrafts, payday loans, credit and store cards. Your mortgage will be the biggest loan you ever take out, so removing those other debts first will help you immensely and demonstrate to providers that you are responsible for paying loans back. As a new homeowner, eliminating other debt before you get your mortgage will also make it easier to budget and keep on top of mortgage repayments.


  1. Check Your Credit Report

Any lender will look at your credit report and see the strength of it as a key factor in what they offer you, so checking this yourself first should be a priority. You can get a free credit report from a number of trustworthy websites. Find out if you have a high credit score or a low credit score and see how you can improve or maintain this.


  1. Have a Price in Mind

Property prices are wildly different depending on where in the country you want to buy and what kind of property it is. London house prices can differ massively, based on which area you’re looking at. It’s important to have an area in mind, as this will help you determine how much money you need to save for a deposit. Once you decide where you want to move to, you can budget accordingly and figure out how long it will take you to save.

You may find some great deals on house prices because a lot of renovation work is needed. While getting a smaller mortgage for a property like this might be easier, bear in mind that you’ll then need money to renovate the property.


  1. Buy Together

Buying a property with another person is a great way to double your savings for a deposit. For many couples, investing in a mortgage together is a big step and can help considerably with getting onto the property ladder. Buying with a friend is another viable option. For both friends and couples, it’s important to have a thorough discussion beforehand and be clear about the investment in case any disputes occur.


  1. Get Some First-Time Mortgage Advice

Mortgages for first-time buyers can certainly feel overwhelming. There are not only a variety of lenders, but also different types of mortgage repayment schemes and other additional fees such as stamp duty and surveyors. Opting for some first-time mortgage advice from an independent mortgage advisor can help immensely. You’ll be able to talk through which options are available and what works best for you and your finances.


Scott Farrell is the director of Rite Mortgages, offering independent mortgage advice to first-time buyers and plenty more. Scott and the team can help secure mortgages for first-time buyers with bad credit scores, freelance workers and many other situations.

Motoring Money – Beating Depreciation

In collaboration

If you’re looking to purchase a new or used car, you’re probably looking at making one of the most expensive purchases in your life aside from your house. However, as cars can sometimes lose value quickly, you’ll want to try and purchase a vehicle that will still be worth as much as possible when you come to sell it on.

So, how do you cheat depreciation? You’ll need to know some general rules and you’ll have to select a model that people will still want in years to come. Fortunately, used car finance experts Trade Centre Wales have advice to help you defeat depreciation in your car.

What to look for

In general, luxury cars will hold their value better than small family models. SUVs and 4×4 models in particular hold value well, with cars in that class retaining around 46 per cent of their price after three years when bought brand new.

When it comes to the used market however, your best bet is to look for big name, economical vehicle brands such as Audi, Volkswagen and BMW diesel engines. These will have a higher purchase price compared to petrol variants but will be worth more than them when you resell thanks to the economy and longevity of diesel engines. As more people prize fuel economy thanks to rising costs, diesels are growing more appealing and therefore their price holds better.

Avoid buying top of the range models as these will depreciate in a similar fashion to other high spec variants and will be far more expensive to buy new.

The best models to choose to beat depreciation

Of course, the best cars generally are luxury models such as Ferrari’s and Lamborghini’s, but not everyone has the luxury (or budget) to buy those brands. Instead, you’ll want to look at cars such as….

Dacia Duster

We know this one isn’t diesel but this is one of the best value car brands on the market, Dacia introduced the Duster as their affordable SUV option and the car has proved popular with the 1.6 litre petrol Ambience model holding its purchase price well. However, the 1.5 dCi model is also popular and retains its price. A nearly new 2016 model will cost around £14,950 – but you can expect to sell for around £9-10,000 after three years which is a great return.

Audi A1

While the premium brand may not scream affordability, the resale value of an Audi A1 is high thanks to both the prestige of the manufacturer and the rise of public interest in smaller cars. You canfind a new model for anywhere between £15-18,000 new, while three year old models are on the market for around £10,000 and up (excluding those with mileages in the 100,000+ range) – still a great resell price.

Volkswagen Scirocco

A sporty model that not only looks great but carries the Volkswagen badge of prestige, the VW Scirocco is a great choice in the diesel variant as it holds its value well. A new model will cost around £20,000, and you’ll get around £13,000 for a three year old car with sensible mileage.

Range Rover

Are you noticing a trend? The bigger the name, the better the value. The Range Rover is a fairly iconic vehicle – but is in such high demand due to its spike in popularity that it holds value better than other luxury competitors such as the Audi A8 or Mercedes S-Class. Brand new, you’ll pay around £76,350. A 2013 model with less than 40,000 miles can sell for as much as £58,000.

While this gives it a good depreciation percentage compared to other vehicles however, you’re still losing over £18,000 – enough to buy yourself a top spec Ford Fiesta or similar small car.

Vauxhall Viva

The sub-Corsa small car is an affordable car when bought new, but its popularity seems to have ensured good resale values. It loses just £2,258 over the course of three years and 30,000 miles – thus making it a great choice when you want a cheap used car you can resell later. Brand new models are around £8,890 and good condition 2013 plates can be had for £5,000 and up.

Ultimately, car depreciation depends on your initial budget. If you’ve got the money to purchase a Range Rover or other luxury brand, you’ll most likely consider £18,000 of depreciation acceptable. However, on a smaller budget resale becomes much more important – so opt for an affordable car like the Vauxhall Viva or Audi A1.

The Benefits of Free Resume Writing Software

It can be a bothersome task to write your resume yourself. It can be so tedious that you may be tempted to just have a professional write it for you, or you may pay for some commercial software to do it. But you can make use of a good resume writing software for free.

So why should you use a program like this? Aside from the fact that it’s free, its use also offers a lot of benefits:

  1. It offers a step by step guide to beginners. Admit it—it can be an intimidating task to build a document on which your future employment relies so much. How do you start? What info do you need to put in?

With the right software, you’re offered assistance through every step of the process. You’re asked the right questions so that you know what info to put in. Your answers are immediately placed in their proper sections.

  1. It doesn’t take a lot of time. This is because every small task, such as preparing the sections and columns, indenting lines, and putting in spaces and bullet points have all been done for you. All these small tasks can take a lot of time, and you have more important things to do with your time.
  2. Your resumes look great. Every expert on resume writing emphasizes readability, while a resume should also stand out. These requirements aren’t always easy to balance, but a good resume program can do this with no problem.

The key is that they have templates already in place so you can just put in the necessary data. Most of the time, these templates have been selected for their success and popularity among hiring managers. They’re easy to scan and they look great.

With the templates in MS Word, you are limited to resume designs that everybody else is using. That won’t help your resume stand out.

  1. You can check how your resume looks on a monitor. Many hiring managers don’t bother to check resumes that have been printed out. They scan resumes on their computer monitors instead. So here you can check that your resume looks god on a computer monitor. A good program can even offer templates that have been selected on this basis.
  2. You can save your resume online. This is usually in PDF format. Not only is this format easy to read, but it’s not easily changed.
  3. There’s usually some password protection. This means you’re the only one who can make changes to your online resume. You don’t want some hacker sending out your resumes with false data, and they may even make use of your contact info.
  4. You’re also able to print it out. This allows you to send in a hard copy of your resume to local businesses. Often, the program chooses fonts that are readable for both monitors and on print, so you won’t have to worry about that.

In fact, most of your worries are taken care of when you use resume writing software. Even the price shouldn’t worry you, because it should be free.

In collaboration