After years of renting and watching many of his friends buy their first home, Chris Bell fulfilled a life-long ambition of getting onto the property ladder thanks to London Help to Buy.
Chris, 27, purchased a 3-bedroom apartment at Venue, a new development by Fairview New Homes in Anerley, SE20, after being impressed by the spacious interiors and the fantastic transport links into Central London.
The Senior Sales Manager, who works in King’s Cross, had been renting with friends in Balham but yearned for a space he could call his own.
Despite saving money in a Help to Buy ISA for a number of years, Chris thought home ownership was still beyond his reach.
Finding himself priced out of buying in Balham and the surrounding areas, Chris turned his attention to the SE20 postcode and soon discovered that Venue, a collection of 1, 2 and 3-bedroom apartments off William Booth Road in Anerley, offered an ideal location for commuting.
With transport links from Anerley Station to King’s Cross available in just 40 minutes, Venue’s location is just one of the reasons Chris decided to make his move there – alongside the development’s landscaped gardens, private outdoor space and the affordability of its homes.
By using the London Help to Buy scheme, he purchased a 3-bedroom apartment at the development and since moving in, he has fallen for Anerley’s unique community charm and its close proximity to South Norwood Country Park and the renowned Crystal Palace Park.
Chris said: “When I started my search, location was the prime factor for me and it wasn’t until my housemate moved into the Crystal Palace area that I found that it would also be a great option for me.
“Anerley Station offers great transport links to Central London and with Venue being located just a couple of minutes’ walk from the station, I’ve managed to cut my commute at the same time as buying my own home – it’s the best of both worlds.
“Like many first-time buyers I know, I could not afford to get on to the property ladder without the Help to Buy scheme. Paying a smaller deposit and having the reduced mortgage was a huge help to me and I’d recommend the scheme to young buyers.
“Anerley has its own distinctive characteristics, with lots of bars and restaurants both on your doorstep and in the surrounding areas of Bromley and Crystal Palace. I’ve really enjoyed exploring the area and found a good sense of community which I haven’t seen in other London suburbs.”
The London Help to Buy scheme enables buyers to purchase a home with a 5 per cent deposit and a 55 per cent mortgage, while the remaining 40 per cent is provided as an equity loan which remains interest-free for 5 years.
Chris said: “What really stood out for me at Venue was the layout of the apartments. All the rooms are very spacious, which you don’t always expect with a London apartment.
“Fairview’s sales team were fantastic, everything went very smoothly with my move and I was in my new home three-and-a-half weeks after reserving.
“I’ve settled in really well here and I’ve even recommended that my old housemate in Balham gives the development a look.”