My First Home: 'It had a horrendous pink carpet in the living room'

Aged stained pink carpet in a house with James McGuire, area manager for William H Brown, inset

James McGuire, area manager for William H Brown, says his first home in north Norwich had horrendous pink carpet in the living room - Credit: Getty Images/William H Brown

As part of our new series, we’re asking YOU to share the story behind your first home.

This week, William H Brown’s area manager, James McGuire, shares his experience.

James McGuire is an area manager at William H Brown

James McGuire is an area manager at William H Brown - Credit: William H Brown

When did you buy your first home? 
May 2008. We found the house on Valentine’s Day so it was quite fitting. I bought through William H Brown in Norwich before I was an agent myself and it’s one of the reasons I now work there.

Where was it? 
Hillmead, north of Norwich.

What was it? 
We chose an ex-council property because it was big and good value for money.

How much did you pay for it? 
£132,000.

How did you save for it? 
Thankfully my wife and her parents were the ones I have to be grateful to for our deposit.

How did you decide on the location? 
I was raised in north Norwich and it provided easy access for my wife to see her family in Aylsham, which is where we live now.

Period terraces, like these in the Golden Triangle area of Norwich, are in high demand

James said they had been looking at Victorian terraces but were advised to broaden their search and found an ex-council house - Credit: copyright: Archant 2014

What was on your wish list? 
We were looking for Victorian terraces, which is why we were so lucky to deal with Jackie at William H Brown, as she changed our mind-set when we were struggling to find something suitable.

Were there any problems? 
The neighbours were good people but their dogs were a bit of an issue. However, they did keep them quiet when we had kids!

How did you feel on move-in day? 
Like we had a lot of work to do, but this was very exciting.

Did you do any work to it? 
Kitchen, bathroom, flooring, plastering and decorating. Oh and the heating which was broken. It was a very cold first winter!

Old carpet with stains that needs to be replaced

James says that the property had a "horrendous" pink carpet - like this one - in the living room of his first home - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Any disaster stories or fond memories from your time there? 
We welcomed two of our children into the world with this as our family home.

It had a horrendous pink carpet in the living room when we moved in.

We also had three lodgers over three years and had some great nights together before we had our children.

What did you learn about homeownership after moving in? 
That it’s the most free you will ever feel despite the responsibility that goes with it.

What advice would you have for other first-time buyers? 
Widen your search, be open-minded and think carefully how you will deal with your bills. 

Our estate agent and in-house advisor really helped us and they are the reason I wanted to become an estate agent and helped me form my own values as an agent.

Would you like to share your story? Get in touch with me at rebecca.macnaughton@archant.co.uk