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Two first-home buyers: one in the country, one in the city. Who had it easier?

Buying a first home has never been easy, but after last year’s supercharged price rises, the dream of home ownership has become further out of reach.

Against a backdrop of rising living costs, low wage growth and weak savings rates, house prices rose to record levels in 2021, locking out many aspiring homeowners who could not save their deposits fast enough to keep up with the pace of growth.

Whether you’re buying in a capital city or a regional area, the financial hurdles facing first-home buyers are confronting. Domain’s recently released First Home Buyer Report found the time it takes a young couple to save a 20 per cent deposit for an entry-level house has blown out to record levels across the nation.

It now takes, on average, five years and eight months to save for a 20 per cent deposit for a house in a capital city, and three years and 10 months to save for a house in a regional area or country town.

The challenges of getting on the property ladder in a capital city are well documented and, going just on the time it takes to save, buying in a regional area should be easier – but it comes with its own set of challenges.

Domain spoke with two sets of first-home buyers: one who bought in a country town, and the other who bought in a capital city.

Here’s how they experienced their journey to home ownership.

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