With plans to start a family in the next few weeks, Ashlee Newmann, 34 and his partner Amy, 30 knew they had to make sacrifices if they wanted to buy their first home.

Buying their own home was important to them because they calculated the figures and realised that they were paying the same price as renting in the Adelaide suburb of Torrens.

To start the process of saving, they moved back in with Ashlee’s dad, sold their two cars and sacrificed their social life. They would invite their friends over to watch the footy which saved on expensive dinner or drinks out.

“The sale of our cars gave $50,000 towards the deposit. We then saved a further $35,000 through working extra shifts. I’m as a painter/decorator and his partner works in human resources. Working more shifts took our deposit to $85,000,” he said.

“We spent a year looking for their dream home, spending the weekends at open homes, unfortunately missing out on some properties by around $50,000 to $100,000.”

They ended up settling on a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home on a 700 square metre block in Gawler for $518,000.

“We didn’t use any guarantor loans or government schemes. Moving back in with my dad is what made the difference,” said Mr Newmann.

Mr Newmann also said the mortgage broker, Chris Longwill from Mortgage Choice who has helped a lot of first home buyers recently was a God send.

“He helped us through the whole journey on how much we could spend, our repayments and advised us on building inspections.”

Mr Longwill says that he’s seen a lot more first home buyers in the last three months than in previous periods and that like Mr Newmann and his partner most of them are using genuine savings.

“Around 60 per cent are using their own deposit, 20 per cent guarantor loans and 20 per cent are opting for government schemes.”

Mr Newmann is typical of other first home buyers he has helped secure mortgages, with the majority saving for one or two years.

“The majority of them are getting variable owner-occupied loans and are generally spending $450,000 to $500,000 on established homes rather than new builds.”

Mr Longwill adds: “Fewer people are building, they’re buying established. Most first home buyers want to buy an established home.”

Mr Newmann’s final words of advice to first home buyers is to make sacrifices to achieve your dream of owning your own property.

“We plan to continue working overtime so we can pay off our mortgage faster.”

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