My First Home: 'I bought a two-up two-down cottage for £32,000'

'Sold' and 'for sale' signs with Garry Thompson, branch manager of Abbots in Hunstanton, inset

Garry Thompson, branch manager of Abbotts in Hunstanton, shares his story of buying his first home - Credit: Getty Images/Abbotts

This week, Garry Thompson, branch manager of Abbotts in Hunstanton shares the story of buying his first home.

When did you buy your first home?
July 2001.

Where was it?
Chatteris, Cambridgeshire.

What was it? 
A two-up two-down cottage. It was the only property I could really afford and there was no stamp duty.

Garry Thompson, branch manager of Abbotts in Hunstanton

Garry Thompson, branch manager of Abbotts in Hunstanton - Credit: Abbotts

How much did you pay for it?
£32,000.

How did you save for it?
I used my credit card for a deposit.

How did you decide on the location?
The area was really affordable and I was looking to relocate for my job.

What was on your wishlist?
Nothing in particular, I just wanted to make sure I got onto the property ladder.

Were there any problems?
The property did need updating a bit but I didn’t do any work to it.

How did you feel on move-in day?
I felt extremely excited at the prospect of owning my own property at the age of 21.

Mortgage and loan approved concept: house on a coin pile. planning savings money of coins to buy a

Affordability of the area helped Garry Thompson decide on his first home because he wanted to get on to the property ladder - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Any surprising moments? 
It only took me three weeks from offer accepted to completion, which I was quite shocked about!

What did you learn about homeownership after moving in?
Owning your own home really helps you manage your money when you know you have a mortgage and bills to pay.

What advice would you have for other first-time buyers?
With the high demand and shortage of properties coming onto the market, I would highly recommend that first-time buyers put themselves in a strong position by getting as ready as possible to pounce on properties.

This would be things like getting a mortgage agreement in principle (AIP) in place and making sure you choose the correct agent to help guide you through the house buying process.

I'm always on the lookout for people who want to share their stories. Have you recently bought your first home or relocated to Norfolk? Get in touch with me at rebecca.macnaughton@archant.co.uk