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  • First time buyers move to new home during lockdown

9 June 2020

It was late last year when Will Grace and Sammie Wiltshire decided to stop renting and buy their first home together. Then they discovered just how much they could get for their money at Priors Orchard, the new homes by Seaward Properties in Southbourne, so they set their plans into action. 

That was just before the lockdown was announced in March. But as they now had to move before their tenancy ended in April, the young couple worked closely with Caroline and Laura of Simply New Homes at Henry Adams, as well as their solicitor, financial advisors and Seaward Properties, to successfully exchange contracts and safely move in to their new home during the lockdown period.  

Will described their reasons for moving this spring: “We came to this area after finishing uni and we liked it so much that we stayed. But after two years, we were done with renting. We felt like it was just throwing money away so we started looking at homes to buy. 

“When we came to see this house at Priors Orchard, we definitely decided that new build was the way to go.”

The young couple reserved a two bedroom house at Priors Orchard and although they liked the open plan layout of the show home, they preferred a separate kitchen as it suited their lifestyle better. 

“Luckily in January, Caroline was able to take us into a house with this layout where a lady had recently moved in and she kindly let us look around.” 

Using Help to Buy scheme, Will and Sammie were able to reduce their monthly mortgage payments which made the house even more affordable. 

“Caroline explained all about Help to Buy and put us in touch with Key Solutions who did everything for us, they even sorted out our mortgage which made it easy for us. I also went into various banks to get comparisons and I couldn't get a more competitive rate.”

As they had to leave their rented accommodation during lockdown, it was essential that all the legalities and finances were in place in time for them to move in to Priors Orchard.

“It was a bit of a panic,” says Will, “so we had to make sure our solicitor kept things moving along quickly and Seaward Properties managed to get the house finished in time.”

Will and Sammie were particular about the finish but any small snags they spotted had all been remedied by Seaward Properties before completion day. 

“On legal completion, the Managing Director of Seaward Properties, who lives locally, met us at the property with social distancing in place and the house was opened up ready for us to move in, the keys were on the side with a welcome basket.

“So we just came straight in and shut the door behind us. It took us a few days to move our things in because it was just the two of us in our cars and thankfully from only two miles down the road. 

“There's nothing we've had to do since moving in. Seawards gave us a curtain package via a local interior designer, which was really good although the fitter couldn't come in before because of lockdown restrictions so everything’s being installed next week.”

The Sales Office at Priors Orchard is now open again for viewing appointments with strict guidelines to maintain the safety of both buyers and staff. To make an appointment, contact Simply New Homes at Henry Adams on 01243 521833 when more details and guidance will be given. Online videos are also available for virtual viewings. 

Already 60% of the homes at Priors Orchard have been bought by discerning home buyers. Current availability includes spacious 2 bedroom houses from £299,950, 3 bedroom semi-detached homes from £339,950 and substantial 4 bedroom detached houses from £689,950.  

Since moving in to Priors Orchard, both Sammie and Will have been working from home but with a second bedroom easily doubling as a home office, they’ve found it easy to adapt to the new ways of working from home under lockdown. 

“Moving here has been great, we absolutely love our new home,” said Will. “There’s loads of space and loads of storage. It's all worked out really well and been much easier than I'd thought.”


Inspiration , New Homes

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