Buying in today’s property market

Things to consider

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As you’re making your decision to help your loved one buy their first home, you’ll want to think about developments in the property market as things may have changed since you last moved home.

How will your loved one buy their home?

Knowing how to save for a home can be quite tricky. As well as getting up to date with the property market, you’ll need to get a thorough understanding of a few more moving parts.

1. Talk to them about understanding their finances

Your loved one needs to understand how they spend to help them budget, so that they can save up for their deposit. Having credit problems can hinder their chances. It’s important for you to understand how you can help them.

2. Today’s mortgages

Which one is best? Tracker? Fixed? Repayment? Interest only? Here’s our handy breakdown. Your loved one can also use our mortgage calculator to understand how much we could lend them.

3. Decision in principle

This lets a person know whether we can lend them the amount they need for a property. Your loved one will need one before they can apply for a mortgage. Before starting to look for a home having a decision in principle shows the estate agent that they’re a committed buyer when viewing properties.

4. Applying

Once an offer has been accepted, your loved one can apply for a mortgage. Santander offers mortgages online or by phone. Not available in branch. They’ll need to have key information to hand when applying.

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First time buyer guide

Our first time buyer guide gives more detail on saving for a first home, who to talk to and what to do. 
Find out more

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Dream home checklist

Print it out and tick it off – what you’ll need to do
Find out more (250 KB)

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The deposit

The minimum deposit most lenders ask for in the current market is 5%. If your loved one can put down a larger deposit, they could get a lower interest rate and even lower mortgage payments. They're also likely to have more mortgage deals to choose from.

If they were to buy a property for £200,000, they’d need to put down £20,000 for a 10% deposit or £30,000 for a 15% deposit.

Our home deposit calculator below can help you work out how much you and your loved ones need to save on a regular basis to achieve the goal.

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Home deposit calculator

It can take years to save up for that first home. Take a look at our home deposit calculator to work out how much you, your loved ones or both need to save on a regular basis to achieve their goal.

Try it now

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How much of a mortgage can your loved one afford?

Working out how much they can borrow is always hard. Lenders not only assess if they can afford the payments now but whether, if rates did increase in the future, they’d still be able to afford it.

The lender will complete an affordability assessment with your loved one which looks at their income and outgoings, as it's the lender's responsibility to make sure they can afford the payments. Before you look seriously into helping out, it’s a good idea for you to have a conversation with them to give you the peace of mind that they can afford the monthly payments.

Your home buyer can use our mortgage calculator to work out how much they could borrow with us, based on the help you’re looking to provide.

Buying using a government scheme

There are number of government initiatives available. To learn more, open up the ‘Government schemes’ section of our first time buyer page

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You might also be interested in

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How might helping affect you?

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Guide to buying your first home

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Budget calculator

Work out what you spend each month
Find out more


95% of 59 Mumsnet testers would recommend our Step up: Helping family to buy pages

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Applications are subject to status and lending criteria. Applicants must be UK residents aged 18 or over. The amount we will lend depends on your circumstances, the amount borrowed and the property. A higher deposit may be required for a flat or new build.