As a first-time buyer, you are often told to lower your expectations and just accept that you will have to make many compromises to get on the first step of the property ladder. So for Mr Luis Yamagusuku, it was a bit of a surprise to find that he could buy his ideal home while making huge savings on his rental costs.
“To be honest, I was pretty shocked that as a first-time buyer, I could afford this high level of property in central London,” says Luis. “To top it off I have one of the best views over London that I can enjoy from my balcony, that’s an incredible bonus that I am really surprised and grateful for.”
Originally from Lima in Peru, Luis was fed up with paying huge rental costs each month and it was a good friend and colleague that suggested he take a look at a Higgins Homes development called White + Green, where he had just bought an apartment.
“When I first came to London to study, I lived in a modern flat but in an older building, which made me realise that when I bought my own home, I wanted a brand new building, which is not so problematic,” says Luis. “When my friend told me where White + Green was based, it sounded ideal. I work in Shoreditch, which is just 11 minutes’ walk away. I hate commuting and did not want to compromise by buying too far out of central London.”
White + Green comprises 144 properties featuring one, two- and three-bedroom apartments, as well as a range of citipads. It is situated between Whitechapel and Bethnal Green Underground stations, ideal for travel across the whole of the capital. It is surrounded by the best that East London offers with its mix of bars, clubs, markets, art galleries, boutiques and independent coffee shops.
“Once I viewed the one-bedroom flat at White + Green I didn’t actually do too much research of anything else; it was spacious and bright with smart interiors and had everything that I wanted and more,” says Luis. “I really love the architecture too; the roof tops make it really interesting.”
Luis viewed the development just before the lockdown hit the UK in March. He immediately put an offer in then the pandemic took over. “The whole buying process really went beyond my expectations,” says Luis. “I thought there would be multiple delays or something would go wrong but it was so smooth and fast that I’ve been recommending Higgins Homes to many of my friends.”
From start to finish, the buying process took about two and a half months, a delay of about four weeks due to the start of the pandemic. Luis says: “In normal conditions, the process would have been faster but I wasn’t concerned at all because the communication between everyone involved was excellent.”
One of the main reasons for Luis buying a home was to save on his rental costs. He explains: “I bought through Buy to Rent and was able to negotiate a good mortgage rate which has enabled me to make a monthly saving of £600. I think this is incredible as I have the home that I want, in the area that is perfect for me and I’m building something for my future.”
Having previously rented in Aldgate East, Luis is very familiar with the area and is enjoy the apartment which he has moved into with his partner. “This is a great place to live, there’s loads to see and do and it is so convenient for the rest of London,” Luis adds. “Throughout this pandemic, I’m probably busier at work than I’ve ever been so it is a relief that we were able to just settle into the apartment and live our lives without needing to make any changes. I’m really happy how the apartment works and we are both enjoying the space and the views.”