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The East of England is a fantastic place to call home and has been an attractive option for many of our buyers looking to make their first home purchase for a variety of reasons from location, amenities and nearby countryside.

If you’re thinking of getting on the property ladder for the first time, it can be a daunting task. From narrowing down your location to figuring out what type of property you want, there are so many things to consider before you sign on the dotted line.

So, here are top tips from first times buyers of Cala Homes across Essex, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk on purchasing your first home:

Toby and Rebecca, Cala at Wintringham, St Neots: location is everything

Toby and Rebecca moved into their first home at Cala’s Wintringham development in St Neots in July 2022, just ahead of the arrival of their new baby. Their three-bedroom Ellington house style caught their eye as it’s perfect for a growing family, with space to both work from home and close to good schools for their daughter.

Rebecca’s top tip is to be organised and do your research: “I had a spreadsheet of locations, detailing house prices, nurseries, distance from parents, and commuter costs – as at that point we thought we’d be heading into London every day.

“Wintringham as a location just ticked all the right boxes. The train station is just a 10-minute walk away, which is so helpful getting into London. There’s an excellent school a stone’s throw away across the road. We read about just how good the school was in the Guardian, which was a real plus point, especially since we’re starting a family.”

Megan and Ben, Newlands Park, Mistley: the finer details matter

Megan and Ben bought their first home earlier this year on Essex’s Sunshine Coast at Cala’s Newlands Park development in Mistley. Megan’s tip is to be as particular as possible, and if you have questions, ask! Megan said: “Since I work as a building surveyor, I knew exactly what I wanted because I know what sort of problems can arise.

“I work with both older style properties and new-builds, primarily in defects, which means as far as prospective buyers go, I’m probably on the pickier side! Energy efficiency was a big factor for me, as well as the style of heating, as I know how expensive it can be to heat a home that isn’t properly planned out and insulated, and the carbon footprint associated with that too.

“I was also very firm on my decision that we should buy a property built with proper stone masonry, and the Cala homes at Newlands Park ticked every box.”

Megan added, “The Cala team were amazing about everything. Since we’re first-time buyers we didn’t really know how to go about everything, but Cala made sure the whole process was stress-free and straightforward.

“With my job, I wanted to know about every little detail and know every decision the site team made. I thought they’d find this annoying, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. They were delighted to go through everything with me.”


Aleksandra and Jan, Saddlers Lea, Newmarket: it’s a professional’s game

After 14 years of renting, Jan and Aleksandra Girman escaped ‘generation rent’ with their two children earlier this year when they bought their first home in our Saddlers Lea development in Newmarket.

Jan’s tip is to let the professionals make it as easy as possible for you: “We were fortunate that Cala and the solicitors took most of the legwork out of the process and made it much smoother. Philippa and Kim at the sales office were particularly helpful, kind and willing to go the extra mile. I wouldn’t have known where to start without all their help.”

New development - Waterbeach, Cambridge

Plenty of Cala Homes across Essex, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk are suitable for first time buyers and fall under the government’s newly raised stamp duty threshold of £425,000, including Waterbeach in Cambridge, coming in early 2023.

Cala at Waterbeach will feature a selection of 1 & 2 bedroom apartments and 3 & 4 bedroom houses, designed to complement this evolving, new community, surrounded by beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Amongst 250-acres sits a richly diverse woodland, green open space and a 23-acre lake, nestled at the heart of it all.

A former airfield and barracks, Waterbeach has been designed to create a quality lifestyle for families of all sizes and ages to enjoy. Whether you're looking for your first home, a larger space for your growing family, or looking to downsize, discover our collection of apartments and houses, ranging in size from 538 square feet - 2,038 sq. ft., coming soon to Waterbeach.

To register your interest on our Waterbeach development page or call 01223 080 687.

Cala News & Lifestyle

The design of a home doesn’t stop at the door... We are passionate about sustainable and inclusive communities. Our homes look good together, mature well over time and sit well within their surroundings.
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A warm Wintringham welcome

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