Alessandro and Hiyori Sottilaro explain why purchasing their first family home at Abbey Quay was possible with the DMS scheme | Weston Homes

Alessandro and Hiyori Sottilaro explain why purchasing their first family home at Abbey Quay was possible with the DMS scheme

Abbey Quay, a 6-acre riverside urban village by Weston Homes in Barking, an area undergoing one of London’s largest regeneration projects in recent years, provides some of the most competitively priced high quality affordable housing in the capital, making it the ideal place for young families to live, like Alessandro Sottilaro, his wife Hiyori, and their two young children who were able to secure their first home at the development with the Discount Market Sale (DMS) scheme.

Abbey Quay offers an exciting collection of 1,089 new one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments of mixed tenure, all with their own private balcony or terrace, alongside 22,281 sq ft of commercial and leisure space which is planned to include a new pavilion restaurant, local shops, cafés, gymnasium and community hub.

Alessandro a health and safety officer, met his wife Hiyori at a language school in London in 2010. “We wanted children and we both worked but we could not think about buying property,” says Alessandro, 45. “Prices were crazy, and it all seemed hopeless, so we rented. Then recently, our landlord’s son wanted to move back into the flat and we needed to decide our next move.” It was at this point that the couple, now with a daughter, aged five, and a three-year-old son decided that it was time to purchase their first home.

Thinking that purchasing a new home could be a smart financial move in the long run due to the cost and maintenance involved with older homes, the couple began looking at new developments. Alessandro notes that “my office was in Barking. I am based there – so I started looking in the area. I liked the Weston Homes apartments at Abbey Quay, but I initially thought that we could not afford one until I found the Discount Market Sale scheme which offers buyers working or living in Greater London a 20% discount”.

Alessandro, who managed to take advantage of the DMS scheme says “we needed three bedrooms and by saving £100,000 using the discount, we could afford a new apartment that is perfect for us. We went directly to the showroom, met the sales consultants and within five minutes we wanted one of the homes and bought immediately”.

Discussing his new family home, Alessandro notes that “there is a private, secure internal podium garden where the children can safely play and also the huge private balcony just off of our living room. The schools are rated well by Ofsted, and the whole area is being transformed with billions spent on a new town, shops and facilities. Because of this, we feel sure our home will go up in value and create a good investment to share with our children”.

Alessandro and Hiyori were attracted to the contemporary interior of the apartment and the amount of space it gave for family life: “I love the fact that it is so fresh and modern. It is elegant and finished to such a high standard, with double glazed windows, big storage cupboards and room to keep the children’s bikes in the garages below”.

The couple both worked from home during the pandemic and have begun to travel into the office occasionally. When looking for a home it was imperative that they had access to good transport links into central London. “When we move into our apartment, we will continue to do a mixture of part-time commuting and home working, however, commuting is not hard with two Underground stations nearby”.

For a young family, having enough space and flexibility for daily life is of utmost importance. Alessandro notes that “the apartment has two big double bedrooms, and the children will share until they get older, but for now, we will use the third bedroom for an office.” The spare bedroom can also function as a guest bedroom for when family and friends come to visit, meaning that their new home is adaptable for all their needs.

Providing riverside living at its very best, Abbey Quay has been master planned to provide a new urban village for Barking. Abbey Quay directly overlooks the River Roding, a tributary of the River Thames, and is bordered by London Road and Abbey Road, overlooking Abbey Green park, just a short walk from Barking’s mainline and London underground station. Designed by award winning architectural practice Broadway Malyan, Abbey Quay consists of striking contemporary buildings, ranging from seven to 29 storeys, providing 1,089 apartments. Dunstan Place and Erken Plaza are the first two apartment buildings to be built and launched in phase one of the development.

Loxford Plaza, a large public square overlooking the river, is the centre of the urban village with a pavilion restaurant, outdoor seating and river views. Central to life at Abbey Quay is the village Community Hub, with its concierge service, comfy seating areas and flexible leisure spaces. Maker’s Yard is a second public square, bordered at ground level by employment space for creatives and business start-ups, complete with cafes and space for outside exhibitions and market/deli stalls.

All the elegant apartments at Abbey Quay feature contemporary, open plan living areas, opening onto balconies, complete with bespoke designer kitchens and luxurious bathrooms, all finished to the highest specification with modern London living in mind.

The homes offer a premium fully inclusive specification and are equipped with superfast full-fibre broadband. The contemporary kitchens by Oakwood Kitchens have quartz stone worktops and upstands, a wide range of integrated appliances and stainless-steel sink with integrated removable chopping board, tap with hose-spray extension, instant boiling water tap and neat integrated soap dispenser. The bathrooms have Arctic white suites, walk-in Fascino smart showers or bathtubs, heated towel rails, integrated vanity storage, a mirror with de-mist feature and a choice of floor and wall tile colours and finishes.

This new home at Abbey Quay gives Alessandro, Hiyori and their children the kind of future the couple had begun to think would elude them forever. “It is a huge step forward and feels incredible to know that the home is ours- it is such a big achievement for us,” beams Alessandro. “My wife and I are incredibly happy, and we love our new flat which will be ready by spring 2023”.

Alongside the Discount Market Sale scheme, Weston Homes also provide their unique worry-free First-time SecureBuy (FTSB) scheme, which allows first-time buyers to reserve and then conditionally exchange contracts on a home off-plan for just a £500 reservation fee, with a requirement of only a 5% exchange deposit and then, six months before build completion, the buyer can apply for a mortgage. The FTSB scheme can be used in conjunction with the Discount Market Sale scheme.

Suzanne Aplin, Group Sales & Marketing Director at Weston Homes says: “Abbey Quay is a new waterfront urban village adjacent to Barking Town Centre which brings aspirational and affordable waterfront living to Barking. Delivering striking new buildings, riverside public spaces and new retail and commercial facilities, the new community will provide much needed affordable housing for London families and complement the existing town centre.”

Prices at Abbey Quay start from £327,000 for a private sale apartment and from £376,000 for the last few remaining Discount Market Sale apartments in the current phase available to local buyers working or living in Greater London.

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