Donald MacInnes: First anxious steps towards property ladder

In The Red

I'm not on the Property Ladder. I'm not even on the Property Pavement on which the Property Ladder sits. Back in March, I "celebrated" my 15th year of living in London and, due to the preposterous amounts of cash money one needs to get one's hands on a title deed in this city, for a decade and a half, I have had no option but to pay rent to a procession of gimlet-eyed landlords and landladies, with nothing to show for it but a succession of past addresses strewn across the capital.

Having gotten married, though, I came to the realisation that the time was right (being that 50 per cent of a house is cheaper than all of it). My wife had seen an advert for one of the country's biggest high-street building society/banks that offers a 95 per cent mortgage if you save with them for a few years, so last Saturday morning we went without our usual breakfast-in-bed-while-watching-old-episodes-of-Frasier and made for our local branch.

There was a half-hour maximum on parking on the street, so the chances of us finishing our meeting and getting the hell out before John Q. Traffic-warden showed up were pretty slim.

Inside the branch, we spoke to the woman standing behind a little "meet and greet" lectern at the front door and she told us that one of her colleagues – let's call her Tracy-Louise – would see us in five minutes. We took a seat opposite a door bearing that very name and then, given the fashion for glass-walled offices, spent the next few minutes watching Tracy-Louise prepare for our meeting by updating her Facebook page. She appeared to be about 14 years old. We cast anxious glances at each other and then back at the adolescent who was about to facilitate the biggest financial transaction of our lives. Thankfully, she had by this time exited from Facebook, but was now playing Angry Birds on her phone.

Eventually, her door opened and her young face appeared. She appeared to be chewing something. "Awright?" she said. "You wanna come froo?"

I would like to tell you that we sprinted for the exit, but times is hard and 95 per cent mortgages are, well, a little thin on the ground, so we had to suck it up, ignore her Justin Bieber screensaver and sign over our salaries to her for the next 12,000 years. The upside? She said that she'll friend us on Facebook. Oh good …

Twitter.com/DonaldAMacInnes

d.macinnes@independent.co.uk

Independent Partners; Do you need financial advice on your investments, pension or insurance? Book a free consultation with an independent Financial Adviser at VouchedFor.co.uk

PROMOTED VIDEO
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive

    £23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Report Writer

    £25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Technical Report Writer is re...

    MBDA UK Ltd: Indirect Procurement Category Manager

    Competitive salary & benefits!: MBDA UK Ltd: MBDA UK LTD Indirect Procurement...

    Recruitment Genius: Web Developer - PHP

    £16500 - £16640 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing Finance compa...

    Day In a Page

    Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

    Greece elections

    In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
    Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

    Holocaust Memorial Day

    Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
    Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

    Magnetic north

    The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
    Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

    Front National family feud?

    Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
    Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

    Pot of gold

    Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
    10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

    From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

    While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
    Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

    'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

    Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
    DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

    The inside track on France's trial of the year

    Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
    As provocative now as they ever were

    Sarah Kane season

    Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

    Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
    Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

    Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

    One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
    The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

    The enemy within

    People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
    Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

    Autumn/winter menswear 2015

    The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore