First time buyers are being pushed out of their home town due to the building of London Paramount
Reporter: Amie Stone | Sub-editor: Gabby Espinet
The property ladder seems like a non existent stepping stone for many young people looking to buy a home. Despite government initiatives, it feels impossible for students drowned in student debt and trying to kick start a career to save to move out. In many cases, first time buyers try to move slightly out of London to be able to get their foot in the door. The outskirts of Kent is also soon-to-be a rather expensive area with London Paramount Theme Park being built in Swanscombe.
The entertainment resort is set to increase economic activity in the area and bring 33,000 new jobs to local people. A statement from the Paramount Press team says ‘It is difficult making predictions about potential increase in house prices”. They failed to give any advice for young people who are already finding it difficult to get onto the property ladder. The Ebbsfleet Garden City is a regeneration initiative and aims to build 15,000 homes over the next 15 years. The building of news homes is excellent, but only for the people who can afford. It does not solve any issues who are being forced out into suburban areas.
London Paramount is set to open 3rd January 2020 and 77,000 people are already ‘interested’ on the Facebook event. Local residents are aware of the planning ahead and have been invited to consultation sessions from 6th November. This opens the gateway to property developers and land lords to buy up homes in time for a price surge. These scenarios narrow the opportunity for young people to be able to invest. It creates greater barriers and leaves little options for people who work hard to save.
Philippa Coppitters, 20, Financial Analyst from the area said “It brings more money to the area as house prices will increase. Therefore, wealthier people will be living there”. The local amenities such as, Ebbsfleet high speed services, Euro Star and Bluewater Shopping Centre are attractive qualities to buyers. It is a case of you get what you pay for. However, is it fair for people who have lived there all their lives to be pushed out? London Paramount will revive the area, but at the expense of fresh graduates and young buyers looking to purchase a property.
Ellie Watson, 23, is looking to remain in her local area, but recognises this is going to be a huge problem. She represents an issue many of her young peers face- by the time she has saved, its too late. She said “It’s good if you have already bought, but if you haven’t bought and your still living with your parents and your looking to buy in the future your going to end up out in the country[side]”. She explained her mums home had surged in price in just a couple of years of the park being announced.
The harsh reality of this situation is that young people will have to move further out. It will bring benefits to the area at the expense of first time buyers who have lived there all their lives. It is a generational struggle trying to get on the property ladder, but these projects just magnify the issue.
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