A lot of people live in rented apartments with the intent to eventually save enough money to buy their first home. What are some practical tips for saving for your first home?
First up, write down a budget. You probably have income. You definitely have expenses. Now’s a good time to make a list of these numbers and take a critical look at where cuts could be made. Maybe you don’t really need a boat or that expensive watch you’ve been eyeing at the mall, right? If you have a lot of stuff, consider having a yard sale or selling some items on craigslist or via your local paper’s classified ads section. Do the math to understand how much money you currently have saved up as well as the amount you’d like to have saved up by a certain date. This way you have set yourself a goal and written down a budget in order to achieve that goal in a specific period of time.
Next, do whatever you can to eliminate debts in your life. You want to go into home ownership debt free, ideally. It’s important that you start to pay off credit card bills in full and on time, as well as pay back any creditors you currently owe money to. In order to get out of debt, you might have to make some lifestyle changes. Instead of cable TV, you could get TV channels over-the-air for free. Instead of owning two cars, you could try sharing one. Rather than eating out at restaurants often, try making simple meals at home because you can actually save quite a bit of money when you decide to be frugal.
As for the surprises that come your way in the form of bonus checks, cash gifts from friends or relatives, and/or tax refunds, put all those in a savings account that’s earmarked for your plan to own your own home. In other words, any money coming in that’s not part of your regular income should automatically get put in the bank, to be used toward buying a home. You’d be surprised at how these things add up!
Finally, call a reputable real estate agent, such Donna Littlefield, who will provide you with the guidance you need. You can contact her at 716-578-1788 to discuss your future home ownership goals. She’ll be happy to help you get on track to buying your first home in Wheatfield, Pendleton or Amherst.