'We wanted to be smart, buy now and avoid new laws'
A couple jumping on the property ladder have said they timed their mortgage purchase to "avoid the incoming high mortgage prices".
Dubliners Amanda McDermott (28), a fashion buyer from Cabra, and Niall Free (30), an electrician from Ayrfield, have been counting pennies and carefully saving for a deposit for the last three years.
"Once we knew about the tax rebate system on the agenda and the new 10pc deposit requirements, we decided to try to get in before it," Ms McDermott said.
"We tried not to rush it but at the same time we wanted to be smart about it."
Three years ago, the couple applied to college courses to obtain degrees which might enable them to apply for a mortgage.
Ms McDermott decided she wanted to "move out of retail" and did a post-graduate degree in fashion buying and management.
"First I had to save for the degree, but while I was doing that Niall was able to save while he completed his course," she said.
After saving for three years, the couple decided to start applying for mortgages.
They initially approached two banks, AIB and KBC.
However, they were told "it was too soon" for them.
But Ms McDermott has access to a financial consultant attached to her workplace.
The couple were able to get a referral in AIB where they were approved before finding a property.