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First time buyers try before they buy

31 Jul 2018

For Jo and Nathan, finding the perfect new home was made easier by renting a property built by the developer they ultimately chose to buy from.

Key to their decision making was location which had to be commutable for both – Jo, who works just outside Reading as an Events and PR Account Manager and partner Nathan, who works in Corporate Affairs for a Media Company in London. Given the impressive rail links into central London from Reading (you can get to London Paddington in 23 minutes during rush hour), enhanced further by the promise of Crossrail from 2019, finding a home in or around Reading seemed to be a logical decision for this young couple. Less predictable but on trend for a time-poor generation, was their desire to buy new. “As our first home, we wanted something new and ready to move into rather than a ‘project’ we had to work on” says Jo. “Our work lives plus Nathan’s commute, mean that the little spare time we do get, we want to enjoy spending together. Reading is a fantastic area – there is a huge range of shops, restaurants and facilities – something for everyone and, being such a short train journey from central London, means we can enjoy the life the Capital has to offer too.”

The temptation to buy new was further enhanced by the Government’s Help to Buy Scheme which enables any purchaser (not just first time buyers) to buy with as little as a 5% deposit, making it easier to access private home ownership in a shorter period of time. “Help to Buy was definitely one of the determining factors in making us look at new builds instead of second hand properties but, in addition to that, because we had been renting a newly built property by developer, Bewley Homes, in the 18 months leading up to our purchase and because we had experienced first hand the quality and specification of their product, that ultimately attracted us not just to new build homes but to Bewley as a quality construction brand as well.”

Their search brought them to Reading Gateway – Bewley’s contemporary new development, only 3.5 miles from the commercial centre of Reading and 0.5 mile from the M4 (J11). “At Parklands, where we rented a Bewley apartment, we had been extremely impressed by the professionalism and high level of customer service provided by the on-site sales team. Although no other apartments were available to buy at Parklands, they told us about their new Reading Gateway development which, at the time, was in the preliminary stages of construction and that there would be apartments coming to the market as part of the diverse mix of property available. We registered our interest which meant when the apartments first came to the open market, we were amongst the first to be given the opportunity to view and purchase.”

It is now a couple of months since Jo and Nathan moved into their new home and they have not been disappointed. “The apartment is just fantastic – really contemporary” says Jo. “We’ve got two bedrooms; two all-important parking spaces; both of us are finding our respective commute’s easy; and the quality and attention to detail is evident throughout – from integrated kitchen appliances to the bathrooms by ROCA and the superb room proportions. It’s exactly as we had expected it to be having previously rented but even better because we own it! Better still, we can enjoy our spare time safe in the knowledge that we have a well constructed new build home and, that if anything should go wrong, we can contact Bewley’s friendly customer care team who will take care of it for us.”