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Open for inspection need not be a daunting prospect.An interest-subsidised ASP savings account or a savings fund? Pick the right way to get on that property ladder.

1. If you are under 31 you can count yourself lucky: the state will lend you a helping hand in saving for your first home. When you put aside 10 per cent of the price of your home on an ASP savings account, the state will guarantee your mortgage. The interest rate on the account is also relatively high with a two-per cent additional interest paid on the sum once the saving target has been reached. An ASP account holder is also exempt from paying tax on the interest, which normally amounts to 30 per cent.

2. An ASP mortgage has the benefit of being secure. If the interest rates go up the state pays an interest subsidy on the loan, which in practice means that it pays some of the interest charged on the mortgage for the first ten years.

3. Not all hope is lost even if you are on the wrong side of 30: just find a partner who is young enough and set a joint ASP account. Alternatively, you can start saving on a normal savings account or start a savings fund.

4. If purchasing your first home is still some years away, a fund is a good idea. If you start putting 100 euros on a savings account now, in seven years' time you will have accumulated a nest egg of around 8,700 euros. In comparison, savings fund will likely give you around 10,000 to 11,000 euros.

5. A savings account is a good option if you might want to access your money quickly. The value of the funds may be at all-time low just when you find your dream home. Savings accounts, however, do not pay high interest rates and you run the risk of having inflation eating away at your savings. One way of reducing the risks of funds is to put money aside also in a savings account.

Heini Maksimainen – HS
Niina Woolley – HT
© HELSINGIN SANOMAT
Image: Ville Männikkö

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