A new kitchen in a brand new home has been the perfect place for talented Newport mum Alaa Abdullah to bake and photograph her amazing cake creations.
Alaa, along with her husband Ahmed, seven-year-old son Omar and year-old daughter Yomn, moved into their new house at Bellway’s Heron’s Mead development in January from their previous rented home in Alexandra Gate.
During the lockdown, Alaa had started to bake as a way of keeping her active whilst on maternity leave from her job as a teaching assistant. She started taking orders on her Alili’s Facebook page – and her beautiful bakes have since become the talk of the development.
Alaa told us…..
“It all started when I was on maternity leave and I needed something to occupy myself. I started to bake cakes and I realised that I had enough time to do it. Like the cakes, everything seems to be growing but it has become slightly more difficult as I am now back at work.
“If demand is there then it would be something I would consider as a full-time business. I shared them with Lewis, the sales advisor at Heron’s Mead, to say thank you for all the work he had put in by helping us on our journey and we couldn’t thank him enough.”
The Abdullah family’s move to Heron’s Mead marked the successful end to their two-year search for their first home.
After stumbling across the development on the internet, the couple visited three times before deciding to buy their three-bedroom semi-detached Tailor house type.
Ahmed, who is a quality engineer told us…..
“We had been wanting to move for some time as the location was a big tick for us. The move had been on and off for two years because we couldn’t find the right fit but when we did we just went for it. We really liked the property and it just felt right.
“There are plenty of well-regarded primary schools in the area and the house itself has a lot of space. We also now have a big garden which is a plus for the children and now we have the luxury of having our own place to park our car.
“We were renting a three-bedroom terraced house and we had a conjoined kitchen and living area, so we wanted to make sure that those two rooms were separate.”
And the new kitchen has allowed Alaa to turn out some pretty spectacular cake creations.
The family had targeted the outskirts of Newport to lay down roots for the long-term future of their children – and are already seeing the benefits.
“We had prioritised the area over any specifics that we wanted. We didn’t really have a major preference over a house type but we wanted to ensure it was in the right area. We didn’t look at just new builds, but buying new has benefitted us and has given us the opportunity to have things how we wanted them.
“It’s very near to where we both work and is a much better commute for us both. I can even have my break at my house if I wanted. The children really like it and we have had some opportunities to explore the area where we have been to the park to feed the ducks.
“The school is a short walking distance away and as we head into the summer with the nicer weather, it will get better too.”
In pursuit of their move, the couple took advantage of Help to Buy Wales, which now enables eligible purchasers to buy a new-build home up to the value of £250,000 with just a five per cent deposit and 75 per cent mortgage. The remaining 20 per cent is provided as an equity loan which is interest free for the first five years.
By using the Help to Buy scheme, Ahmed and Alaa’s monthly mortgage payment on their three-bedroom house is just £600 – compared to the £625 they were paying for their three-bedroom rented property in Pillgwenlly.
Alaa told us…..
“It was exciting for us and it was a great feeling to finally move. We were so happy to own our first home and it was seen as a long-term investment because at the time we were just throwing money away for something that was never going to be ours.
“We found the experience of using Help to Buy really good and we had a very smooth transition to get it to work. It benefitted us as we paid a smaller deposit as well as lower repayments due to the five years interest free.
“We have saved elsewhere too, including on our car insurance due to us updating our details and moving homes. We have saved over £500 on our car insurance between us. We have also seen our council tax come down too which has been an unforeseen benefit of the area.”
If you’d like details on the Help To Buy Scheme, just visit the Welsh Government page HERE.
There are currently three and four-bedroom properties for sale at Heron’s Mead with prices starting from £257,995 for a three-bedroom home, and £409,995 for a four-bedroom property.
For more information go HERE or you can call the sales team on 01453 557402.