Mary and Rich are living in their dream home. There’s a wrap-around porch, a garden in the back and three large bedrooms. But it took more than luck to get them there. They planned and they saved. And that’s what you’ll have to do to achieve a dream home for your family—whether it’s a country place, a downtown condo, a suburban bungalow, your next home, or your first home.
To begin, answer two questions:
- Can you afford it?
- Do you know what you’re looking for?
For help in answering these questions, go to our [First-time Homebuyer’s Guide].
While being open-minded is important for house hunting, it’s equally essential to create specific goals to make your dream become reality.
In other words, keep dreaming, but do extensive research about the market you’re looking in, and into your own finances.
A great way to research your own finances is to track your expenses for six months, through our [Cash-flow Management Guide]. Learn where your money is going in order to manage your money strategically.
Tracking your expenses can make it clear where you are accidentally over-spending.
But when you’re ready to start seriously saving, you’ll need to strategize. Here’s how you can start:
- Automation – Banks make it easy to set up automated transfers online. You only have to make the decision to save once, and automation will keep your decision going.
- Transportation – Whether it’s by taking public transportation a few days a week, biking, or carpooling, changing your commute can help keep money in your accounts.
- Save on food – Overspending on food is one of the easiest ways for your money to escape your bank account; decrease your food expenditures by cutting back on eating out, creating a weekly meal plan, and shopping for sales.
- Reduce consumption – Sell unused items, take advantage of libraries or community events, and cut back cable and other expensive technology subscriptions.
- Cut out the small stuff – It’s easy for small amounts to add up. Purchases at coffee shops and corner stores are often last minute choices that you can avoid by planning ahead.
- Downsize – Living smaller or living with roommates now can lead to living large in the future. Other purchases, like vacations or gifts, can be downsized rather than cut out entirely—take a “stay-cation” or make something yourself as a gift.
Saving for a down payment can mean some tough choices. But when you prioritize saving for your dream house, the goal is certainly worthwhile.
The final step
Now it’s time to put all that planning and saving to good use, and make the best lending decision possible.
That’s where SafeBridge comes in.
We will work with you, evaluating the whole of your financial situation, so you make a lending decision that puts the keys to your dream home in your hands. Contact us today to learn more.