Planning your budget. A practical guide for single house buyers

The very first step to getting a foothold on the property ladder is to get your finances under control and know exactly where you are with your money:

STEP 1

Write down your total income from salary, benefits, tax credits etc If your wages vary, make sure you include all the possible peaks and troughs as best you can.

STEP 2

Write down all of your expenditure such as personal loans, food, travel, clothes, entertainment, subscriptions etc. BE TOTALLY HONEST – even if it scares you.

STEP 3

Estimate what the costs of your new home would be. As well as the mortgage or rent, there’s Council tax, utilities, insurances, telephone, TV. You should also think about the ‘one-offs’ of a deposit, removals, a survey, legal fees, stamp duty, estate agent’s fee if you are selling a property etc If you are buying a lease then there would also be service charges and ground rent to consider.

It may seem like a lot to get to grips with by yourself but there is a major benefit to doing this on your own, – (one of the main reasons couples argue is over money) However, you should find it easier to get your own finances under control, rather than trying to get a spend-thrift partner to mend their ways.

So now you have a clear idea of what you can afford start looking at your options