What Is It Really Like To House Hunt At 18?

My first decision when figuring University out was deciding whether to move into Student Accommodation or not. I had my heart set on moving away from home and really experiencing that University experience that everyone wants to have. However, when the time came I decided last minute to stay at home and study at a local University.

After finishing the first year of Uni, I made the decision to take a year out and decide if that is what I really want to do in my life. Matt and I have also spoken through looking and moving into a place together. Some people would say that at 9 months is too soon to move in together however, not to sound cliché but I do feel that when you are with someone you know if it will last and whether you could live together and truthfully I do feel like we would last and not be a quick and short relationship to pass the time.

With house hunting especially at our ages at the moment it is hard to find a place within a certain budget. We have always kinds spoken about a price range that we would be able to afford each month along with food and all of the bills and at the moment there are a few places that we could potentially look at renting. Although, it is hard to really become committed to a place as you never know what could happen with jobs and family in the near future to decide for definite whether to rent immediately or not. Due to work commitments on Matt’s behalf we have made the decision to continue to look at places but more for the prices and what we would be able to afford between us but look properly for places to rent after the summer period and more into Christmas and the New Year. This would mean that we have the ability to see what will happen both with Matt’s placement and for where I would be within my job as well and whether I would be on the same department with a lot less hours or have the ability to be on a different department with a greater amount of hours.

Around the 24th of May we decided to view a property in North Cornwall, until this point it didn’t quite feel too real for me. I had spent since around Christmas looking at places online on Rightmove and Zoopla. However, when the viewing of a property had been booked I feel that it finally became a bit more real for me as I would be in that specific place for a set amount of time. At first I did find it weird to be looking at moving out at 18 but now as time goes on and as a couple we are looking at more and more places it is starting to feel like one of the most natural things to be doing especially at this time but more importantly it feels the most natural to be looking at places with Matt.

The only problem that I have at the moment in time is that I am a spender, meaning that whenever a paycheck is received it is almost always spent on new clothes, make up, rent and food. However, I know truthfully that if I carried on the same way when it came to the time to move out then I wouldn’t have the money to be able to afford to pay for rent, bills, weekly food shops on top of buying new clothes for the sake of new clothes. This is when I made the decision to talk to my parents and to Matt about opening a separate bank account so that each month I am able to take money out once a paycheck has been received to transfer money so that at the end of the year I am able to say I have this amount so far and rent and bills would come out of that account so that the money that is within my usual everyday account can be used for weekly food shops and also any spends that I would like to do within the week or at the end of the month be able to see how much money has been spent on food and how much is left after the necessities. This meant that any money that was left after food, rent and bills had been taken out of then the remainder could either be put away for holidays or any purchases that I would like to make. For me, personally it needed to be done I am now able to keep track of how much I am spending an on what as well as being able to ensure that I have the ability to budget when a small paycheck is received rather than a large paycheck always being received.

I believe that overall it took about a week of researching and comparing in order to find the best account for this and finally the account was opened. I also needed to ensure that I was able to access the account easily and have the ability to withdraw money in an emergency without the fear of a charge with it being a savings account, I found that Nationwide was able to provide this for me. I believe that the account that I have opened with Nationwide is either the Regular Saver Account or the Flexclusive Regular Saver Account. With both of these accounts there is no requirement to transfer money into the account each month which means that if I receive a smaller paycheck in one month than in another then I am not required to transfer money. All that is needed to ensure that the account is kept open is that there is no less than £1 in the account.

I have found that house hunting can be stressful when what you really want a place and really like a place even though it is not within the budget of a house or apartment in which we are able to afford. On the other hand, it feels amazing when you find a place which you really like and are able to afford, it literally feels like the most amazing thing to be able to find that one place you love to pieces.

I would definitely recommend that when house hunting that you should use multiple websites to be able to find the perfect place. This is because I find that some companies and estate agents will only put their properties on certain websites and webpages. I really like the way that Zoopla have given an estimated running monthly cost with Council Tax, Water, Rent, Gas and Electric whereas Rightmove do not give you an estimated running total, which means that the bills could become a surprise and could mean that not enough money comes in, in a paycheck however, of course it will be easier with both Matt and I paying the bills equally.

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