How first-time buyer squeezed extra £1,000 a month towards £20k deposit using a money diary

A FIRST-TIME buyer from London used a budgeting spreadsheet to help squeeze an extra £1,000 a month towards her deposit. 

After just 15 months Hannah Moeller, 29, had saved up the £20,000 she needed to buy a £315,000 one-bed flat in Greenwich through shared ownership.

Four years ago, she thought that buying in London was just a pipe dream for Hannah, who works at Playstation, when she was on a salary of £40,000 a year.

Fed up renting a room for £850 a month in a house-share, she made a money diary in the form of a spreadsheet to help her set goals and work out where she could cut back on her spending.

She'd already put aside £3,000 to go towards buying somewhere but saved an extra £250 a month by moving house with cheaper rent.

She also found ways to cut back on shopping, holidays, as well as switching banks and cancelling her gym membership.

Motivated by her growing savings account, she'd put away at least £1,000 a month, and after fifteen months Hannah had enough cash to buy property through shared ownership, meaning she owns a 32 per cent share of the flat.

She took out a mortgage to cover the rest of her share, and aged just 26, Hannah picked up the keys to her flat in 2016.

The thrifty homeowner has stuck money saving regime and already reduced her mortgage term by two years after a few overpayments.

We caught up with Hannah to get the lowdown on shared ownership for our My First Home series.

What is your property like and what did you pay for it?

I bought my one-bed, second-floor flat in Greenwich, southeast London, in 2016 via shared ownership.

It’s pretty spacious at 52 sq metres with an open-plan kitchen and a large balcony. There are some community areas outside, a children’s playground and an ecology park nearby.

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