First-time buyers’ switch from renting in Europe to investing in Marleigh
Posted in: Case Studies
First-time buyers Ruben and Anna, have spent the last 10 years living and renting across three countries, but have now decided to switch up their lifestyles and are investing in their first home at Marleigh on Newmarket Road in the historic city of Cambridge.
“We’re originally from Poland but moved to Germany and rented in Berlin for several years. While in Berlin, I was headhunted for a company in Cambridge, and after a lot of thought and research we took the leap to uproot our lives and relocate to the UK. The decision meant Ruben had to quit his job in Berlin and move here without having secured another. However, he found another great role within a week, so it worked out very well! This was the best decision we could have made, and we immediately fell in love with Cambridge, the city is so charming.”
Anna is a Contracts Analyst and Ruben is a Mechanical Engineer in the Biotech industry. Their move to Cambridge is representative of the influx of talent and economic growth across the historic city in recent years, consolidating its position as one of the top five UK tech hubs outside London.
Anna and Ruben rented in Cambridge for two years before deciding to purchase their first home, realising it offered better value for money to pay off a mortgage each month rather than paying high rental prices.
“We wanted to invest our money in a property in the UK as monthly mortgage payments here are relatively on par with monthly rental payments, whereas in Berlin rental prices are much cheaper so there’s less of an incentive to buy.”
Keen to exit the rental market as soon as possible, Help-to-Buy was a must for the couple. Ruben explained:
“We decided to purchase with Help to Buy as it sped up the home-buying process for us. Without it, it would not have been possible for us to purchase so soon and we would have spent longer renting. The scheme, along with the recent Stamp Duty holiday, meant we could afford our dream first home much earlier, so we’re pleased with our decision!”
Throughout their two years renting in Cambridge, Anna and Ruben kept a close eye on the property market to find their perfect home. Anna added:
“We always knew we wanted a new build home as we were looking for something modern and high quality. We must have viewed over 30 properties before making our decision, and it became clear that Marleigh was by far the best fit for us”.
The location was a dealmaker for the couple, offering short commutes of between 15 and 35 minutes, and priced competitively compared to other homes in the area.
Beyond the location of Marleigh, Anna and Ruben have fallen in love with Cambridge since relocating in 2018. Anna detailed:
“We instantly adored Cambridge as soon as we arrived. It makes quite the change from Berlin – the pace of life is slower, the roads are narrower and the city in general is more compact, meaning cycling everywhere is easy and enjoyable. The people are so friendly and welcoming, and my list of things to do seems never-ending, despite having lived here for two years!”
The couple are set to move into their new home in early 2021 and are looking forward to beginning their new life as homeowners after a decade of renting. Ruben beamed:
“We can’t wait to move into our new home, it’s spacious and we have three bedrooms – two of which will be turned into home-offices for myself and Anna. We have our own furniture from Berlin which we’re excited to incorporate into our new home, maintaining elements of the mid-century modern style we adore while embracing new features such as underfloor heating and big windows. We also cannot wait to have a garden – something we haven’t had for years!”
Situated less than a 20-minute cycle from Cambridge city centre, Marleigh will provide up to 1,300 new homes and a wealth of community facilities. This includes a community centre, cafe, office space for local businesses and a 52-place nursery, as well as a new two-form entry primary school. All of the amenities will lie in the heart of the market square, which will play host to regular inclusive community events. Allotments will also be available for residents to grow their own fruit and vegetables, alongside plentiful outdoor spaces, public art displays and sports pitches.
Established by two of Cambridge’s leading family-owned businesses, Marshall and ourselves, Marleigh has been designed by renowned architects, Pollard Thomas Edwards, with the aim of encouraging neighbourliness and interaction. We recently announced plans to deliver the second phase of Marleigh.
Prices at Marleigh start from £264,950 for a studio apartment, £439,950 for a two-bedroom house and £549,950 for a three-bedroom house.