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Work out what you can afford

Ready to start looking? It’s time to work out what you can afford. From saving for a deposit to working out your mortgage eligibility (that’s how much you can borrow), we’ll guide you through the process.

Saving for a deposit

You’ll need a cash deposit to cover between 5% and 20% of the purchase price for your new home. So how do you start saving?

Calculating costs

From mortgage and solicitor fees to surveys and stamp duty, the fees involved in buying a home quickly add up. We’ll take you through what to expect along the way.

Working out stamp duty

Stamp duty is a tax you pay when buying a property in England or Northern Ireland and it changes depending on the property price. Here’s how it’s calculated.

  • Nobody wants to fork out an extra 3% in Stamp Duty Land Tax when buying an additional home. The 'replacement of an only or main residence' rules could be a way out of it, says property lawyer John Shallcross.

  • If you're buying another home which you won't be living in, you may well be liable to pay the 3% stamp duty on second homes. We break down the complex rules in our dedicated Q&A.

  • What is stamp duty, how much is it in the UK and when do you have to pay it? Get the lowdown and use our stamp duty calculator to work out how much you'll pay.

Buying schemes

There are several government schemes out there to help you step onto the property ladder. From Help to Buy Equity Loans to Shared Ownership, we’ve got the lowdown.

Understanding mortgages

Fixed rate or flexible? There’s a lot of jargon out there around mortgages. We’ll take you through what it all means so you can choose the best type of deal for you.

  • Need to work out your mortgage repayments? You can use our mortgage calculator - or challenge yourself to some mental maths with our mortgage calculation formulas. 

  • Environmentally friendly mortgages: from how much they cost to who qualifies for one, here’s everything you need to know about green mortgages.

  • Buying a home to rent out? Here's our easy-to-understand guide to rental mortgages and where to find the best buy-to-let mortgage rates.

  • Paying off your mortgage sooner could save you literally tens of thousands of pounds. Senior mortgage advisor for Natwest, Michael Gyapong, reveals the top five ways to do it.

  • If you're thinking of buying a house and applying for a mortgage, you'll need to know all about loan-to-value. Here's our guide with the lowdown.

  • A good rule of thumb is that you can borrow between 4 and 4.5 times your total household income. Let's work out how much you can borrow for a mortgage.

  • Despite speculation, the government did not confirm a new 99% LTV mortgage scheme in the Spring Budget. But there are still mortgages available for buyers with small deposits. Here’s what you need to know.