#1 3-8-2018 12:21 PM

Essex, England
Couch Potato
Posts: 20

Working holiday or buying property - help!

Since 2012 I have been floating between working jobs that i'm not passionate about(because I don't really know what I want to do) to save and fund my travel. It has never felt sustainable long term as I end up back in England, skint and living with my Dad whilst I find my feet again.

Now I have come to a cross roads.

I have been saving the past 12 months. In January my housemate decided to move out of our house and I couldn't afford to rent there alone so feel like I need to make a decision on what to do with my savings. I applied for a Canadian working holiday visa but was sceptical about being picked out of the pool so put an offer in on a flat several weeks later.

Yesterday I received an invitation to apply for my IEC visa. I am at the very beginning of the legal process purchasing this flat and so withdrawing at this stage would just be paying the solicitors fee. What do I do? Take this chance to go to Canada knowing I may not have the chance in future (I'm 28 this year) or investing my savings as I have a job that I like (Not a forever one but getting up in the morning doesn't depress me?

*Side note I met a guy online dating at the end of the year who went to Canada in January. Can't tell if I am favouring Canada because I have a fantasy about a happy ever after with a man I barely know on the other side of the world.

How do you make such life decisions? Any advice welcome.


#2 3-8-2018 8:37 PM

Bendigo, Australia
Award: Community LeaderAward: Photographer IAward: Happy Happy HappyAward: Vox Populi I
Posts: 204

Re: Working holiday or buying property - help!

Go see a psychic lol.


#3 3-8-2018 8:47 PM

Award: Community LeaderAward: Photographer IAward: Critic IIAward: Writer IIAward: Happy Happy HappyAward: Bedbug IAward: Vox Populi IVAward: Spambuster IAward: Most Helpful Hotel Reviewer (Past Winner)
Posts: 2004

Re: Working holiday or buying property - help!

If I were you, I would go to Canada if there's some other obvious reason why I want to live there than staying with a guy whom I started to see each other. The reason can be anything... some particular study or work is fine, and resting from ordinary life is fine. But I wouldn't move for the sake of another person unless the relationship gets more steady and we know each other very well.

I wouldn't make a huge investment that would influence my future when I am unsure where I want to live and what I want to do. I may still buy the flat in case I pay off the loan even without myself living there (i.e: rent from tenants, selling it out with some premium etc). But if it would limit my future when I really need choices rather than settling down, I would skip the chance.

Anyway, it's just my case and it's your life. Try to give enough time for you to consider with clear mind.


#4 3-8-2018 10:45 PM

Sarah Elaine
Manchester, England
Award: Community LeaderAward: Photographer IVAward: Critic IVAward: Writer IVAward: Happy Happy HappyAward: TravelpedianAward: Bedbug IIIAward: Vox Populi VAward: Spambuster IIIAward: Most Helpful Hotel Reviewer (Past Winner)
Posts: 6070

Re: Working holiday or buying property - help!

I wouldn't dream of telling you what to do, but there are clearly some conversations you need to have with yourself and some actual professionals.  Also, remember not everyone here is a Brit.  Personally, I know that most of Essex is outer commuter belt for London, property prices are spiralling out of any sane control and that for me, at the age of 38 with a good job, property in Essex would be a stretch.  So frankly, I'm jealous you're in a choosing position.  But I will try not to bias this...

1) take the guy you met out of the equation.  He's not proposed, he's not talking about moving in, so the only safe assumption is he's a short term bet.  Please don't gamble property or career on someone you quite liked online. 
2) you're talking about a working holiday, not a backpacking trip - will you break even on this? Can you go without burning your housing deposit?
3) what way do you think the housing market is going where you are, and how fast?  Are prices likely to rise ten percent whilst you're gone and price you back out of the market, or are they pretty stable?  What way do you think property prices will head once Brexit happens?
4) Can you buy a flat and still go by putting a rental tenant into the flat?  For that you need to talk to two people.  The first is your estate agent - get them to value the property for rent.  The second is your mortgage broker or independent financial advisor (IFA) - and if you don't have one, get one, solicitors don't know this stuff and IFAs don't charge until they've got you to agree to something - about whether renting will be legal on your property (not all shared equity schemes allow it), your mortgage (ditto), and what the tax implications for your rental income would be.  Your rental would need to be a percentage higher than your mortgage payments to cover estate agent fees, management fees and taxes on income (potentially, depending on what your IFA says about tax thresholds and tax breaks) but you might break even on having the flat even if you're out of the country for a while.
5) is this really your last shot at working abroad?  I know it gets a lot harder after 30 when all the youth visas dry up, but do you have skills you can use that a country might actually welcome later? Nurses and mine engineers tend to get visas, managers like me tend to find it a bit harder because nowhere is desperate for more bureaucrats.  What skills have you got that you could sell later?


#5 3-9-2018 5:18 AM

Cumming, Georgia
Award: Photographer IAward: Writer IAward: Vox Populi IV
Posts: 3326

Re: Working holiday or buying property - help!

At least in the US renting is inferior to buying as a financial choice assuming you invest the difference.  While I did buy two separate condos (when single) and a house (when married), if I'd stayed a renter all these years I'd be richer today.  I don't regret the house purchase as we raised a family in it.

Sarahelaine has some good advice on the rental aspects.  If you could rent the place for the entire time in Canada you could likely break even on the payments.  But it's still risky, and you'd not have your job in the UK when you returned at age 30.

Good luck.


#6 3-9-2018 7:44 AM

Lee Ann
Montana, United States
Award: Vox Populi I
Posts: 161

Re: Working holiday or buying property - help!

You might try making lists as to positive and negative as to moving. Do you have a job lined up in Canada and what are your prospects of getting one when you get there? What part of Canada would you be going to? It is a REALLY big country and many parts of it are remote. I am talking maybe 1 person (or less) per KM on average in some areas. Hey, there are more bears in some areas than people. This can be a great culture shock. Are you ready for the winters? Winters are harder in Canada than England. -40C is not an uncommon temperature in the winter. Some people love it. It would be a great adventure if you are up to it. The opportunities for being with nature are incredible. But I agree, take the guy out of the picture. Go for you, not for him.


Board footer

Powered by PunBB
© Copyright 2002–2008 PunBB