Lifestyle

I’m 24 and saved £20,000 on a house deposit thanks to seven smart tips – £7,000 came from my humble side hustles

Climbing the real estate ladder has always been a challenge – even more so now that the cost of living has risen so much.

But one woman has revealed how her clever savings allowed her to set aside £20,000 for a house deposit.

Amy Ward has managed to save more than £20,000 on a home deposit

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Amy Ward has managed to save more than £20,000 on a home depositCredit: MDWfeatures/Amy Ward
The 24-year-old medical information researcher developed savvy savings techniques and side hustles she developed during the pandemic

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The 24-year-old medical information researcher developed savvy savings techniques and side hustles she developed during the pandemicCredit: MDWfeatures/Amy Ward
Her sideline activities include cat sitting, which she called a "Nice" way to make money

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Her side hustles include cat sitting, which she described as a “beautiful” way to make moneyCredit: MDWfeatures/Amy Ward

Amy Ward, 24, works as a medical information researcher but took up several side hustles when she had more time during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I’ve been able to save quite a bit over the past few years, a combination of lockdown, budgeting methods, side hustles and mindset helped me get there,” she said.

“One of my main occupations is filling out online survey sites. It’s a really convenient way to earn extra money as all you need is a phone and internet connection.

“I like to fill out surveys to make money because I can do it when it suits me best. I usually fill out surveys when I’m on public transport or watching TV in the evening.”

Side hustles like taking a survey have earned her £7,000 – on top of her existing savings of £20,000, which she’s amassed since launching her Instagram page Amysbudgeting and through budgeting.

“One of my other side hustles is cat sitting,” she added.

“I get paid to take care of cats when their owners are gone.

“Most of this involves filling up food and water bowls, cuddling and playing with the cats.

“I have some returning customers, which is great as I’ve built some great relationships with the cats I visit.”

And the third way Amy makes money is by “creating and selling digital products.”

“I’ve created several products like savings trackers and even an eBook that discusses survey sites as a side hustle,” she added.

She is now hoping to increase her part-time salary from £7,000 to £10,000.

AMY’S SIDE HUSTLE SAVINGS

  • £3,000 from referrals and sign-up offers
  • £1,500 from survey sites
  • £700 from daily spins/cash saving apps
  • £600 from cash back sites
  • £400 from digital products

Amy also relies on budgeting to keep her money on track.

She uses “zero based budgeting,” as she explained, “That’s when your income – your expenses – your expenses: are zero.

“This budgeting method ensures all your money is accounted for, it encourages you to save money every payday and essentially ‘pay yourself first’, which I really like.

“This method has enabled me to save more money every month and I think this method has accounted for a large part of my savings over the last few years – possibly around £10,000 more than before.

She also uses “sinking funds,” where money is put into small pots that you keep separate from your main bank account.

Who is Eligible for the First Home Scheme?

ONLY first time buyers can purchase a home under the First Home scheme and it is not available in Wales or Scotland.

As the scheme aims to help lower income buyers climb the property ladder, you are not eligible if your combined household income is over £80,000 or £90,000 if you live in London.

Those who can afford to buy one of the houses without a mortgage are not eligible for the assistance.

Buyers must use a mortgage for at least 50% of the discounted home’s price.

However, other conditions may be imposed by local authorities, so eligibility criteria may vary depending on where you choose to buy.

For example, some authorities may prioritize key workers.

But after the first three months that the homes go on sale, additional conditions set by the local authority will be lifted for any first homes that have not been sold or reserved.

“For example, instead of having a super expensive December with Christmas, you can create a Christmas fund and save all year long,” Amy explained.

“I’ve been doing this since January and am saving £50 a month into my Christmas fund, by December I’ll have around £550 to spend on everything Christmas.

“With declining funds alone I’ve saved around £5,000 in recent years.”

Through these methods, the couple recently bought their first home together, along with partner Greg, 26.

“By using different methods like budgeting, savings challenges, and lifetime ISAs, my partner and I have been able to save for our home security deposit and any additional fees required when buying a home,” she said.

“Using a lifetime ISA has been a huge help during our home buying process and all first time buyers should 100% consider doing the same, the government pays 25% of the money you save.

“You can save up to £4,000 per tax year, which means you can get up to £1,000 ‘free’ from the government.”

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They bought a two bedroom, mid-terrace Victorian house worth £217,000 and put down a 10% deposit.

The couple plans to use the rest of their savings to make improvements to the home, which they plan to do largely themselves.

She stuck to a budget and often bought discount groceries to save money

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She stuck to a budget and often bought discount groceries to save moneyCredit: MDWfeatures/Amy Ward
She and her partner Greg are now planning to renovate as much of their home as they can

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She and her partner Greg are now planning to renovate as much of their home as they canCredit: MDWfeatures/Amy Ward

https://www.the-sun.com/lifestyle/5574316/woman-24-saved-20k-house-deposit-savvy-tips/ I’m 24 and saved £20,000 on a house deposit thanks to seven smart tips – £7,000 came from my humble side hustles

Jessica MacLeish

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