Like many other families, Ayo Adigun and Wariara Waireri, together with their daughter, Tobi, 6, made up their mind to improve their work/life balance during the pandemic.
Last autumn they used Help To Buy to move from a rented two-bed apartment in Maidstone, Kent to their own much larger three-bed house at Dandara’s Willow Grove development on the edge of the town.
The scheme allows first-time buyers with a 5% deposit to borrow up to 20% of the property’s value (40% in London), and the loan is interest-free for five years. It’s offered on selected new-builds, and maximum thresholds vary across the country.
Ayo, a principal electronics design engineer, and Wariara, a senior manager in international development, have been working from home and are appreciating the extra living space in their new house while enjoying the tranquillity of their more verdant surroundings.
The move has not only allowed them to be more productive with work but also find more balance in their family life.
‘We rented in Maidstone for ten years and always knew we wanted to buy in the area, but it has been a long search to find the right property,’ says Ayo. ‘We love the community spirit in Maidstone, it’s very safe and we have friends and family close by.
Do the maths: How Help To Buy helped the family save
(For a three-bed house at The Sycamores)
Purchase price: £425,000
5% deposit: £21,250
20% Help to Buy loan: £85,000
Mortgage: approx. £1,218 pcm
Estate charge: £21 pcm
Monthly spend: approx. £1,239
‘Looking around Willow Grove, we felt it was the perfect fit for our young family as it is spacious and surrounded by beautiful countryside, which is exactly what we were looking for following lockdown. Dandara has a very personal approach and kept in constant communication with us, which made the whole process a lot easier.
‘The move couldn’t have come at a better time as myself and Wariara are working from home more than ever and we needed the extra space. We have made one of the rooms into a study, which works perfectly.’
The family was equally impressed by the outside space. ‘The garden was a big draw – the house overlooks a meadow, which provides amazing views and lots of privacy,’ adds Ayo.
‘After the first lockdown, it was important for us to live in the countryside and have that escape and fresh air right on our doorstep – especially with a younger child.
‘And there are excellent schools for Tobi that are just down the road and lots of activities for her like horse riding and cycling, as well as parks nearby. It’s a very convenient and family-friendly place to live!’
Willow Grove has sold out but three, four and five-bed houses are for sale at The Sycamores, another Dandara development also on the outskirts of Maidstone and close to sought-after primary schools and transport links.
All homes include parking spaces, from £425,000 with Help To Buy via Dandara.
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