Back in the 80s, a University degree would have landed you a sturdy starting salary and quite possibly a foot on the property ladder in a leafy London suburb. And all before your 25th birthday. These days, thanks to an extreme rise in house prices (especially in London) along with a depressing stagnation in wages in the last 30 years, you’d be lucky to get yourself a shed in Dulwich until you’ve had 3 promotions, spent a couple of years cutting back on fancy dinners out, and worked a Sunday job at a pub in Hackney. Even if you are one of the ‘lucky ones’ – maybe you’ve landed yourself a tidy £30k starting salary on a grad scheme at a fancy management consultancy – the stats say that in 2018 you’re no more likely to own your home than someone on £20k. And to afford the deposit, you’ll probably still need help from mum and dad who are still waiting for a return on the £30k they spent on your History of Art degree. No doubt they’ll be thrilled to contribute. Renting, especially in London, can be just as painful as by the week, prices continue to rise.

It’s not all bad news though – there are plenty of ambitious millennials who are finding creative ways to stretch their £20k+ incomes towards affordable life in London. And since that shed in Dulwich really isn’t worth the wait, here are a few of their top tips we wanted to share:

  1. Stop drinking expensive flat whites. You can moan as much as you want about how your parents are to blame for the financial crisis for overborrowing in the 90s, but it’s not going to get you a better rate on a mortgage now. Get yourself a second-hand coffee machine and save £1000 a year. Although it might seem like a drop in the ocean it all adds up – “if you look after the pennies…” So start saving on the small things now and there will plenty left over for those single-origin-Madagascan-nitro-cold-brews later in your career. It could be the subtle difference between living out your parents’ attic and getting a spot in your own place.
  2. Get a bike. Hefty petrol costs, road tax and insurance are all things you’ll have to fork out for if you’re maintaining a car in London, not to mention the price of parking. It makes owning a car in London expensive and unnecessary. The traffic in London is terrible and although the weather might not always be ideal for it, cycling will cost you even less than the tube and will keep you fit.
  3. Become a Homesharer. If you haven’t yet heard about homesharing, read on as this could be just the right thing for you. If you have a kind and caring nature and are willing to give ten hours a week of practical support and companionship to an elderly person who lives alone, you could pay up to 80% less for accommodation than you would by renting elsewhere. A homeshare arrangement lets you live in a comfortable home within easy commuting distance to work or college in London, all for a monthly rent of less than £200 (actually around £6.25 – almost the same as a Pret lunch!) and this might just be your ticket to truly affordable London living. You’ll have a nice place to call home and the opportunity to learn new life skills from an older wiser housemate. And crucially, some savings left out of that £20k+ salary at the end of the year.

If you, or someone you know, would like to find out more about becoming a homesharer and see if it is something that would work for you, please get in touch with us at Home Share Living. We will be delighted to speak to you. 

020 3137 6421 | |