Birmingham, the UK’s second city, is a thriving place to be. With more canals than Venice, five top universities, and the iconic Bullring Shopping Centre, Birmingham is not only an outstanding tourist attraction, but also a first time buyer’s dream city.

With a population of 1.2million, excellent transport links such as the West Midlands Metro, nearby motorways, and an international airport, first time buyers do not need to be centrally located. There are many options available.

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The average first time buyer property (a two to three bedroom house) in Birmingham costs £180,000, making the ideal deposit approximately £27,000. Saving for a deposit is the important first step, and higher savings will allow you to borrow a smaller percentage of the property value and access cheaper mortgage rates. Ensuring an excellent credit rating helps, and a good understanding of your monthly outgoings, in determining the affordability of mortgage repayments. Banks and building societies have historically lent up to four times your gross annual household salary, although products are changing. It’s important to be realistic with your calculations and to know your limits. Once you find your ideal property, firms such as Sam Conveyancing can offer a home buyers survey, and help with the entire conveyancing process.

With all this in mind, here are four different areas a first-time buyer might consider.

Birchfield

Birchfield is located near Perry Barr, Aston, and Handsworth Wood. The Alexander Stadium, located nearby, hosted the opening and closing ceremonies of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. The world famous Birchfield Harriers Athletics Club are also based here. Birchfield is close to Villa Park, home of Aston Villa Football Club. First time buyers not only benefit from average house prices of £169,000 but also the extremely close links to the M6 and the A34 interchange.

Chelmsley Wood

The town of Chelmsley Wood is about eight miles east of Birmingham City Centre, and five miles north of Solihull. It’s also close to Coleshill and Water Orton in Warwickshire. Chelmsley Wood is an ideal location for first time buyers, as it has good commuting routes such as the M6 and M42 and is also near Birmingham International Airport. The average house price for a terraced property is approximately £173,000.

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Harborne

Much livelier than Birchfield or Chelmsley Wood, Harborne is located in the south-west of Birmingham. Due to its location and proximity to Birmingham – only three miles from the city centre – first time buyers are attracted to this lively area and the hustle and bustle of its bars, cafés, restaurants, and shops. Harborne tends to be an ideal place for those commuting, with great transport links and only a fifteen minute drive to get into the city centre. However, the closeness of the city comes at a cost. Average house prices are around £300,000.

Selly Oak

Relatively close to the heart of Birmingham, with a convenient and commutable distance of less than fifteen minutes by car, Selly Oak has much to offer. With average house prices of £270,000, slightly less than Harborne, it still offers a bustling, vibrant environment. Bristol Road runs through the centre of the area and is packed with shops, supermarkets and restaurants. Selly Oak also offers beautiful parks and scenery, such as those found in Selly Oak Park.