With a business hard hit by Covid and a mortgage shortfall due in a few months, Tracey and Andy Fleming decided their best option was a total life swap, from the south London suburbs to the Norfolk countryside.
In the process, the couple, who had lived in Bromley for 30 years, managed to write off all of their mortgage debt and now enjoy a new pace of life without the financial burden of housing costs.
Amanda Lamb, real estate expert and My Mortgage Free Home presenter, inspired them to find the new property of their dreams – a five bedroom house with annex in Walpole St Peter.
“We had been thinking about moving for a while – we had a shortfall on our mortgage and it was looming. When Covid hit, our company did and made that shortfall an even bigger reality,” says Tracey.
“I saw an ad on a Facebook page saying ‘Are you looking for your home without a mortgage?’ and I just emailed the address to see, without telling Andy. Then I heard to take the next step and it all went really fast from there. “
The couple had what they say was a relatively low mortgage for London prices of £ 470 per month, but they were also paying storage fees for their props rental business.
Having been in their house for 30 years, they also had a mortgage deficit (£ 86,000) worth more than what they had originally paid for the house (£ 85,000) after extending and re-mortgaging over the decades. . “Something had to give,” Tracey said.
The couple’s wedding accessory rental business came to a halt during the pandemic.
Tracey had also been diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma and, although she had been cured for three years, she was determined not to let Guy’s proximity to the hospital dominate the rest of her life. “You only have one life, you have to go on and live it,” she said.
When Tracey and Andy began their home search, they focused on Suffolk to be near their two daughters, one in Leigh-on-Sea in Essex, the other in Surrey. But their eventual house hunt during and after the filming of My Mortgage Free Home confused their expectations.
“The real estate market was changing so quickly, we had been watching Rightmove for years and our research continued to advance faster than we could catch up with.
“Now we’re in an area we never thought we would come to, we probably said in our initial quiz that we didn’t want to be here, but we wake up every day and pinch each other,” Tracey explains.
While the couple didn’t actually find their dream home during filming – their two favorites sold out before they were ready to move – they saw a wide variety of potential properties that made them reconsider their whole lot. approach the house search and rethink some of their reds. lines.
They especially wanted to be in a village with a pub – “and blow me away, we’ve moved to a village that has nothing, no pub, no store,” says Tracey.
They’re now a three-and-a-half-mile drive to a farm shop or butcher’s shop, “but it’s not like three and a half miles in Bromley.” We used to drive an hour to London for work and now we drive for an hour and we are in a completely different place surrounded by amazing sky, sounds and scenery.
“The program planted the seed and we followed it,” says Tracey.
If you want to get rid of debt, you can apply to My Mortgage Free Home by email: hypothè[email protected]