You had the thought: “We need to buy a house.” Maybe renting just doesn’t make sense for you anymore. If you’ve found the right town, the right job, the right person, maybe it is time to invest in a home. But how do you even start to buy a home? They certainly don’t go over it in school. Being a first-time homebuyer isn’t easy. A good place to start is: saving up for the down payment. In 2017, Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report stated, 10% of home buyers found saving for the down payment to be the hardest part of buying a home. Once you figure out what you can afford and what house you could see yourself buying, saving for a down payment is a good next step.
It helps to know what you are saving for. Your down payment is for your home loan or mortgage. The lender gives you money for the house and once you pay it off the house is yours (for real this time). Different loans have different down payment options. If you look into an FHA loan, you’ll find that they usually require only 3% down. Loans from the VA need 0% down for those who qualify. These rates are low, yes, but the bigger your down payment the lower your monthly payment. It’s all about saving money in the long run.
There are down payment assistance programs available to help put money toward your mortgage. They might include forgivable grants. Forgivable grants are loans that either will be partially or wholly forgiven once certain criteria are met. Do some research on assistance programs in your state, country, or neighborhood. They’re out there but ya gotta dig! Here’s one
While household income has gone up 28% in the last 13 years, the cost of living rose 30% in the same time period. Big decisions require big changes. Skipping date night might seem boring now but when you’re on your back porch sipping white wine with your partner, you’ll thank yourself. Try to find creative ways to cut spending. Thrift when you want to change up your wardrobe. Unsubscribe from expensive meal delivery services. Drive less. Bike or walk more. Cut your hair off so you don’t have to worry about getting it done. Forgivable loans and low downpayment options can only go so far when saving for your mortgage. This will be a test in self- discipline and money savvy. Think of it as prep for owning a home which is another worthwhile challenge on its own.