Back in the day, saving for your first home used to be a bit of a doddle. Find a nice savings account paying 5 or 6 per cent, stick away as much as you can every month, and, within a few years, head for the estate agents.
Talk of a 10-year slog to get on the housing ladder and using the stock market to build up your deposit was unheard of. But that was then.
Lockdown became synonymous with domesticity, forcing all of us to review our housing situation afresh. It also sparked a new breed of investors, as caged millennials ventured into buoyant stock market for the first time. It would be tempting to see investing as a magic wand that can conjure up the keys for that longed-for first home.
After all, a standard savings account today pays less than half a per cent a year and, with inflation inching upwards, saving is a recipe for losing money, not accumulating it.