Buying a house for the first time is a big step and investment. After all, prices are always fluctuating, and such a purchase involves a pretty sizable down payment. However, with some careful budgeting, creativity and dedication, it is possible to save for such a property purchase. The following are some helpful tips for people who want to save money to buy a house.
1. Be Smart about your Budget
The basics of saving is clear: spend less than one’s income. However, it is important to really look at a budget and decide what is necessary, what fixed expenses are (i.e. rent, loan payments, etc.) and what can be cut. The worst thing people can do is lie to themselves when making decisions about their budget. There needs to be flexibility in case of an emergency or increases in average prices for things like gas or milk. Understanding target amounts to save each month make it easier to build a budget and stick to it.
2. Make the Most of Savings
Setting aside money out of every pay check is great, but there are ways to make money by saving money. There are high interest savings accounts that are easily accessible. One can earn money just by letting their savings mature and accumulate interest. Additionally, investing in certificates of deposit (CDs) is another way to make the most of savings. Certificates of deposit are when one agrees not to touch money for a certain amount of time (anywhere from a few months to a year). The money will gain higher interest rates than most savings accounts. This is a safe and reliable way to make money and protect yourself from spending it so you can save for a house.
3. Have Rules about Credit Card Use
It is important to understand credit cards, but it is even more important not to overspend on them. Credit cards offer an opportunity to build a person’s credit rating, which can help people obtain favourable interest rates and terms on a home loan. However, over spending on credit cards can make it harder to save. Thus, one should create rules around using plastic for spending. For example, a household could use credit cards only for gas and agree always to pay the balance in full every month. Rules like this protect against debt, and help to have a good credit rating.
4. Consolidate Debts
Creative individuals should look at how to cut interest rates and consolidate debts. This might mean refinancing an auto loan or looking into other insurance companies. As a person’s credit improves, he or she should look into alternate credit cards so that old balances can be transferred in favour of lower interest options. Every cent counts when it comes to saving for a home.
5. Streamline Expenses
Lastly, people trying to save for a home should think about creative ways to change their lifestyle to save money. For example, moving from two cars to one saves on gas as well as on auto insurance and other car payments. Other options include switching light bulbs to energy efficient options, making holiday and birthday gifts by hand, and being creative about vacations. You don’t have to starve yourself of fun when saving for a home, but it helps to really think about creative ways to cut costs.
To save money for a house, people need to take a good hard look at their income and expenses. Even small changes can increase savings. Look for a bank that is going to give you the best deal on your home loan. Home loan deals and rates often change, so be sure to look out for competitive home loan rates. If there’s a great deal, don’t be afraid to switch to it. For Australian readers, UBank offers refinance options with competitive rates. Using high-yield savings accounts or looking into CDs can help people make the most out of their money. No one has to struggle to save money for this purchase. Instead, a healthy dose of creativity, motivation and dedication can go a long way.