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To feel a bit jealous and like my achievements will never bring any reward

(36 Posts)
slappywappydoodah Wed 09-Jan-13 17:04:46

I'm 25 and everyone at home I went to school with seems to be buying a house. Facebook is full of posts about it, along with pictures of their car in the drive and their children holding iPads. I'm from the midlands, near one of the poorer cities in the area, though many of these people grew up with nuclear families and in villages/on farms. Given that so many of them either don't work, or have normal (e.g. normal office, child minding, admin, shop etc) jobs, I just don't understand how they can afford the deposit, let alone the mortgage!

I went to uni and worked all through it, financing my post graduate training with a massive loan. Me and DS (6) live alone in London where I work in a pretty decent profession at very decent money (we're talking probably more than double what people at home earn). I was in care for many years and only left it at 16 so have therefore only started saving in the last couple of years since I started my current job - my savings are still very low. Even with decent pay, London just sucks money out of me. I only commute from zone 3 but it costs a fortune and obviously rent is high. DS goes to state school and I rarely go out as I work long hours either at the office or at home. When I do go out I spend as little as possible and i dont exactly go designer shopping for DS, whose tastes are still quite low on the spending scale (e.g. we're in a lego phase).

How do these people afford deposits for their houses? Am I missing out on some sort of massive inheritance that everyone else gets? Or am I just absolutely crap with money? I never thought I was til recently...

slappywappydoodah Wed 09-Jan-13 17:06:49

I should add that I have loan repayments and I just feel a bit like the loan was necessary for the good job but it's that very method of getting there that is the only thing I can think of that's stopping me getting on the track everyone else is on without having gone for this apparently "coveted" job - they all seem so much happier.

TheBrideofMucky Wed 09-Jan-13 17:10:27

I'm 26 and thinking the same thing. I too, did everything right on paper, put myself through uni and have a decent job but only have a house and a nice car because my partner works for himself and does well. Alone, or with someone on the same sort of salary as myself, I wouldn't have a hope in hell of saving enough for a deposit just yet. It's depressing isn't it.

I think a lot of my contemporaries have had help from their parents though and my own are not in a position to help me. If possible, I'm going to make sure I can help my children out when they are of an age. I expect it will be even worse for them.

Yes, it's not fun.

I'm 28 and in the same boat of not having a mortgage or money. I have plenty of mates are in their 30s or early 40s who still can't afford a mortgage. It's just the way it is.

People who can afford deposits either save up like mad, or get substantial help from parents. People our age can't afford luxuries and a deposit - you have to choose. You can either decide to rent for a long time, or, if you want to save, that means you need to budget very carefully. But then, it sounds as if you do this! It seems appalling to me that you're in this position, as a hard-working mother angry

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Wed 09-Jan-13 17:17:23

Slappy it sounds like you are doing an amazing job. Don't judge your our success by a superficial impression of other people's wealth.

Some people get help from their parents when buying a house. Some people have lots of expensive things, but they could also have big credit card debts, tied into expensive contracts etc.

Remember Facebook is not generally an accurate picture of a person's life.

Ellypoo Wed 09-Jan-13 17:17:32

I bought my first house at 25 but only was able to because I was able to get a 95% deposit, and put the 5% on a credit card (very dangerous, but this was before the credit crunch etc and I knew I could afford all the repayments, and was even able to start overpaying my mortgage after 18 months after I had paid off the credit card). I did buy it on my own though, and have a good job, but didn't go to uni - worked straight from school & studied and got my qualifications through evening school etc. It was very hard, but I did it all on my own (it was a tiny cottage too!!)

Some of my friends either bought in cheaper areas/dps have good jobs or owned their houses before/had help from parents - or all of these.

Living in London is very expensive, and the cost of living IMHO outstrips any higher salaries from a lot of other areas of the country.

You have done really well, and are achieving a lot for yourself, without having the help from others (eg DP or parents) that a lot of the people you went to school with would have had. Please don't be hard on yourself - you should be very proud of your achievements!

LoopsInHoops Wed 09-Jan-13 17:21:17

Massive well don for all you've achieved. I'm sure you have people saying that to you quite often (I was in care and 'succeeded' too, I have heard it quite a few times).

Yes, it is families helping out. It's is nigh on impossible for someone of your age to have saved for a deposit on a house wihthout help, never mind your salary or costs.

I have to be honest, I do own a house, but I never would have managed unless I'd married DH, who isn't wealthy, but his parents are close to retirement so could afford to lend us money. Also, we bought a VERY cheap house. No way would London have been an option.

Enjoy your son, enjoy your success, and remember that owning property is a real headache. smile

LoopsInHoops Wed 09-Jan-13 17:22:21

(Sorry for typos, a bit drink)

LoopsInHoops Wed 09-Jan-13 17:22:29

*drunk

Also I think you need to consider that as it's the internet, a little bit of good old exaggeration may be involved here.

slappywappydoodah Wed 09-Jan-13 17:23:50

Thanks for the replies - glad to know others feel the same.

Ellypoo - I know what you mean about London, but the only reason i earn what I do is the location, and the job isn't really doable outside of the city. I'm an M&A lawyer so really there's not much call for it elsewhere.

My absolute dream is to own my own home. it would literally spell security and happiness on a plate for me! I think it's a product of being in care for so long... but it seems like everyone else has it and I don't!

Sorry - my self pity rant can stop now - just glad to know im not just being unreasonable!

purrpurr Wed 09-Jan-13 17:25:01

My sibling managed to buy a house because my grandparents assisted. I bought a house with my partner because his parents assisted. I would never have been able to buy without help. I'm pregnant and already putting money aside for my child's deposit. However, I do wonder whether even the notion of owning property will be outlandish by the time she is at that stage. It's impossible.

purrpurr Wed 09-Jan-13 17:27:19

Oh, and just to add on a probably pointless note, but if I ever win the lottery, I'll try to set up some sort of charity that assists folk with a deposit for a home. I think there should be something available that helps people - a home should not be a luxury.

slappywappydoodah Wed 09-Jan-13 17:30:34

Purrpurr - that is an amazing idea! i wonder if it could be made business-viable so that entrepreneurs woudl consider it... hmmm... thinking might commence on that!

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 17:41:35

You're being really hard on yourself Slappy and you're living in London which is expensive. You've achieved so much.

Everyone makes themselves look good on Facebook. Also, is life really all about getting your children an iPad or having a better car than someone else? Don't get me wrong, I like creature comforts as much as the next person. It's good to have aspirations, but aspiring to iPad ownership? You sound far more intelligent than that.

The housing market is shit for young people now, and I'm already saving so DS can move out of home one day. Although at this rate he will probably be in his 30's. sad

Nearly everyone I know have got deposits from their family or from DP/DH's family.

Eastpoint Wed 09-Jan-13 17:41:52

I think that at 25 with a 6 year old you are pretty amazing to have completed post-graduate education.

It could be that your friends from back home will never live in 'better' houses than those they've bought now as their incomes won't rise in the same way that yours will. I speak as someone who knows an ex-M&A lawyer who now lives in a £3.5-4m house and has a second home worth nearly £2m and is less than 20 years older than you. While you are continuing to invest in your future they have stopped investing and are simply maintaining their position.

I think that people don't buy so young or settle down as early in London - there's too much else to do, as you are demonstrating. I hope I don't come across as patronising but I think you are doing brilliantly to be running a family home & coping with the pressures of such a demanding job.

AndBingoWasHisNameOh Wed 09-Jan-13 17:44:24

OP - I have a lot of knowledge of your field of work. At the risk of being patronising can I congratulate you on getting to where you are from a difficult start and with a young child - really not easy I know.

The good news is that if you stay in your field your earnings will rise quite substantially over the next few years and you will get yourself into a position where you can buy.

Lastly whilst the demand is not as high and the money not as good, if you really want to move out of London you can - there are decent M&A practices in major cities such as Birmingham and Bristol. Although you are likely to take a hit on the quality of work without necessarily a massive decrease in hours.

MooncupGoddess Wed 09-Jan-13 17:44:34

Hardly anyone in London buys a property before 30 - unless they earn megabucks or have family help to the tune of six figures plus. I was 33 and it took me 12 years of hard saving plus an unexpected inheritance.

If you're an M&A lawyer you'll be earning well, so just save your arse off for a few years and it will come. Honestly.

GrendelsMum Wed 09-Jan-13 17:51:06

Maybe the houses are much, much cheaper, and there are two adults contributing towards the mortgage payments - so the household income is equivalent to your salary, but with much cheaper houses? And maybe some of them are getting a contribution from grandparents / parents and so on? I know my sister got £3000 or so from my parents when she bought a house for the first time, to help her with the fees and so on.

Hi OP- can I also add a huge well done for your achievements. I was a city lawyer at 25 too ( although I had things a lot easier than you in terms of my very traditional route there- although from background of absolutely zero cash) and still could not afford to buy a house in London. Eventually did when met DH at 26 but it was in a dodgy street in Tooting, falling apart at the seams and we only got it due to 95% mortgage and that was 21 years ago.

The only people who could usually had a lot of parental help, or bought and then let out rooms- which usually turned into a nightmare!

So just think that you are doing things on a different path to other people- you have invested your time and money in getting what will be a fantastic career for you and you might not have a "house" for you and DS but you do have a "home" which you have worked hard to create. I can see that coming from the care background owning your own home has a particular significance for you, but it is only "bricks". Carry on with what you are doing and as you rise up your career ladder you will be able to buy one day.

And as for the gadgets- all kids love them, but no 6 year old needs an Ipad- what he needs is what he has got- a clever, inspirational, hardworking mum to put him on the right path in life.

Good luck with your career!

vintagewarrior Wed 09-Jan-13 18:01:43

You sound like your doing great for your age! Haved you considered Shared Ownership properties? We are 40, and although we've saved a pretty good deposit, still can't get enough to buy a whole house in our area (Surrey), and really don't want to move away from family & friends.

MummytoKatie Wed 09-Jan-13 18:34:46

Ok - so let's get this straight.

You grew up in care. You have a young child. And at 25 you have a degree, a post grad law qualification and a job as a city lawyer.

And you don't think you are doing very well?!?

You are doing amazingly! Buying in London is near to impossible. Give it time and you'll get there.

OwlLady Wed 09-Jan-13 18:39:05

I am ten years older than you and cannot afford a house smile my mum lives in the midlands though and she thinks home ownership is normal and usual and she worries about me renting greatly hmm (I am in the home counties)

Ephiny Wed 09-Jan-13 18:49:45

We were able to save for a London house in our early 20s but that was because we had two incomes and no childcare costs. If you're on your own with a child, it is obviously going to take longer.

It sounds like you have good career prospects, and as property prices aren't rising rapidly as they were back when we bought, you can afford to wait a few years.

There are cheaper areas of London (such as where we live!) but tbh you might be better off renting in a nicer area with less crime and better schools.

suburbophobe Wed 09-Jan-13 19:12:32

Life is not about houses, cars or Ipad ownership...

even though loads of people buy into that

PanickingIdiot Wed 09-Jan-13 19:37:33

My absolute dream is to own my own home. it would literally spell security and happiness on a plate for me!

Oh, but it doesn't, you see. The things that spell security are skills, education, talent, work ethics and the ability to land on your feet whatever happens - all of which you have already proved you have.

You should be very proud of yourself. Don't listen to Farcebook and people whose only achievement is to have a massive debt to their names. By all means, get yourself a house if that's your dream, but don't lose perspective.

Ephiny Wed 09-Jan-13 19:44:57

I agree, home ownership certainly does not mean complete security (especially if you mean with a mortgage, rather than owned outright). And you don't know anything about people's true situation from their smug Facebook posts.

For all you know they might be jealous of you - your great job and your independence.

There's never much point comparing yourself to other people anyway.

Goodwordguide Wed 09-Jan-13 19:49:28

Spend anytime at all on the property board and you will soon see that there is a massive discrepancy between house prices/rents in London and elsewhere. My family in the north-east cannot believe what our tiny ex-council 3bed house in London went on the market for, yet it we had offers in a week. That's why so many move out eventually to the likes of Kent, Beds., Surrey etc - still expensive but nothing compared with zones 1-6.

Not many people in their mid-20s can afford to buy, particularly by themselves and while providing for a child. There's no rush, it sounds like you have achieved an awful lot already and you have great prospects. Buying an ipad is not an achievement.

forehead Wed 09-Jan-13 20:06:45

OP, your achievements will definitely bring you rewards. Sometimes , one has to be patient.
Don't believe what you read on facebook. I know many people who lie blatantly on facebook.

NatashaBee Wed 09-Jan-13 20:10:30

I think you have done amazingly well. I do own a house now but panic in the same way about saving for DCs college, our retirement, building up a nest egg. I sat down yesterday and made a long term plan on a spreadsheet with each year and the milestones that will happen, eg car finance paid off, mortgage paid off, child goes to full time school and daycare fees end, etc. It did make me feel quite a bit better that we're heading in the right direction. Maybe it would help if you mapped out the next few years in the same way?

Hydrophilic Wed 09-Jan-13 20:43:38

I'm only a year younger than you and, out of my group of friends from back home, am the only one to have moved out!! There's no children yet either.

You sound sorted. You may not have a house yet but you have a good job, education and a sensible head on your shoulders. It will all work out.

I'm hoping to go back to uni so won't have any chance of home ownership until my 30s but it's all about playing the long game with life. smile

Another who is amazed that at 25 you have a 6 year old and a post grad education!

DP and I are in a similar situation to Hydro, most of our peers either live at home with parents still or are living within 20 miles of our old school and down the road from Mum and Dad, a mix of no kids/kids though. We won't be able to afford a mortgage for a long time, DP is in his second year of a four year degree and I can't work full time! Yet according to our FB profiles we're really settled, looking forward to the future (which is true, but we're both terrified too!), have no money problems, no health problems, on track to getting our own place, etc etc ;)

It does all work out in the end, working hard now will mean an easier future for you, and like others have said, FB isn't that representative of real life!

sameoldlovebunny Wed 09-Jan-13 21:32:45

you and your child seem to be doing fine. wouldn't worry too much about home ownership its a pain in the backside. you're already doing really, really well.
can you do your job from somewhere cheaper? leeds and manchester are nice and the villages around have reasonably priced properties.

BunFagFreddie Wed 09-Jan-13 23:57:59

I agree, home ownership certainly does not mean complete security (especially if you mean with a mortgage, rather than owned outright).

Agreed. The house belongs to the bank until you pay the debt back.

MorrisZapp Thu 10-Jan-13 00:09:58

If your schoolmates still live in a deprived part of the midlands and you live in London, surely you don't need to ask how come they have houses and you don't?

BackforGood Thu 10-Jan-13 00:15:43

At only 25, having had time out to go to University and to have a ds, I can't really see why you would expect to have had time to save for a deposit.

You're hardly the exception. It said on 'Location, Location, Location' last week that the average age of the first time buyer across the country was 30, and in London, was 32, so you've got 7 years of saving you can do before you become later than "average".

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