Flying start

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CHANCELLOR George Osborne claims first-time buyers “deserve the same chance as their parents” but purchasing my Marchmont flat in 1970 was hardly a walk in the park. Mortgages were rationed and couples had to wait months for funds to be made available by building societies in which they had to have held a savings account for a year.

I had to put down a full 10 per cent cash deposit and was only permitted to borrow the equivalent of two-and-a-half times my own salary – my wife’s salary did not count.

Inflation raged through the next ten years and my mortgage interest rate reached 20 per cent, so you can see why boomers remember the decade as the Sombre Seventies.

In the end I did extremely well out of property but, married at 26 and with a young family, there were long periods when I was flying by the seat of my pants.

(Dr) John Cameron

Howard Place

St Andrews