Well, well, well. It’s been a little while since I last managed to pop a blog post on here, but I’ve got the most exciting news to share. I’ve bought a FLAT! Ahhh!! Yes, I’m now a home owner and after months of saving, stress, constant badgering of solicitors, and a whirlwind weekend where I moved all of my belongings into storage for the sake of two days, on July 31st I picked up the keys and moved myself in.
The flat is in Cardiff Bay – a quick fifteen minute walk to the centre of town, and a five minute stroll to the seafront. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know how much I love Cardiff Bay. I love being by the water. There are lots of nice places to eat and drink, beautiful walks, the most gorgeous sunsets, and I have lots of friends living there too. There’s just so much going on, yet there are areas where it is so peaceful, and it’s the perfect balance for me. There really is no prettier place in the summer, and it’s equally beautiful in the winter months too. It tends to be the place where lots of young professionals live, so it was top of the list in terms of the area I wanted to live in when I started flat hunting.
I wrote back in January that this year would be the year I’d start seriously looking into buying a flat. I’d been saving for quite some time before that, in fact I’d been putting money aside for a few years when I could. I transferred money from my student loan, and had been putting money from birthday and Christmas gifts into an ISA for a few years. Since starting full-time work I had been setting money aside each month to provide a healthy top up to my funds, and between last Christmas and July I really knuckled down to ensure I had enough money for a deposit.
I’ll be honest and say that I’m pretty good when it comes to saving money. Apart from my rent, bills and gym membership, I don’t have that many outgoings and I am always quite careful when it comes to spending. I think it was instilled in me from a young age, and I’ve been working since I was 15 and started saving for my first car, so I’m used to seriously cutting back on my spending and know what I should and shouldn’t spend my money on. That being said, saving up for a deposit was a very long process. It was tough, I was constantly careful and found myself sacrificing social events and gatherings in favour of saving some dollar. But soon it came to a point where I had enough to start searching, as I was just wasting money on rent when I could be putting it towards my very own place.
Then came the exciting bit! Back in February the house hunt began. I went to see a mortgage advisor and was provided with a mortgage in principle and I trawled through property websites and estate agent catalogues to line up some viewings. I headed out with my mum and auntie to view some properties, and also dragged my mum and dad along to see various flats across the Bay area of the city too. It honestly was so much fun. I loved looking for the perfect place and imagining it as my own, and one day, as I sped across the city on my lunch break to meet my mum and dad for some viewings, I found the flat that I now call mine!
It was weird, but as soon as we walked in we all knew that this was the one. As cliched as it seems, it was just perfect for me and exactly what I wanted. With fairly new kitchen and bathroom fittings, and extremely minimal work to do (apart from changing a few carpets) it meant that I wouldn’t have to find the money to do any serious decorating, as a “doer-upper” type of property was one I simply could not afford. It had a beautiful kitchen, the space was light and airy, the view from the balcony was gorgeous, and it was in a sought after complex. My parents told me to go for it, and they offered to help out a little with funds as it was slightly over budget, but I decided to take the plunge and at the start of April I put in an offer, and after days of negotiations it was accepted!
From there, it was like a game of cat and mouse if I’m honest. There was so much waiting around, chasing people, filling out paperwork. There was a lot of stress, a lot of tears. More chasing, more waiting. All in all, it was a seriously stressful process that went on for 17 weeks, but I finally got the keys at the end of last month and walking in there knowing it was all mine was simply the most amazing feeling. In fact, I still cant quite believe it’s mine!
I’ve been in the process of making it my own and things are really coming together. My wonderful mum, who has helped with soooo much over the past few months, has been kindly waiting in the flat for furniture deliveries while I’ve been crazy busy with work. And she’s even snuck in my grandparents to help put up my bed, and my auntie and uncle have come along to help with some furniture building too. My family have been unbelievably supportive, and the place is starting to look and feel like home. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled over the next few weeks for some interior posts!
Lots of love. xoxo