The biggest item on any bucket list is buying a house. The first time you buy a home, you feel like you are crossing a sort of finishing line and arriving as an adult. The problem is that before you can even buy that new house you must save a sizeable deposit for your mortgage, and this is the biggest hurdle any hopeful homeowner will face.
It’s hard enough to find a home you love, get through all the paperwork and surveying without having it feel like it’s out of reach. Renting just isn’t right for most people – you want to own your home, make changes as you see fit and have somewhere you can truly call yours. To get a great mortgage, your deposit needs to be a sizable one. Googling ‘how much house can I afford’ can help you locate calculators to give you an idea of what your deposit may be. With these tips, you’ll be able to put together a realistic savings plan by working out where you can cut excess spending so that money can go toward a down payment on your first home.
- Check out your options with your bank. Before you know how much your deposit will need to be, you need to check out the mortgage options with your bank. It’s common for most people that a 20% deposit will be needed but that can mean a huge amount of money. Consider housing schemes that mean you can share ownership and get advice on help to buy programmes for first time buyers.
- Ask the parents. A lot of parents save for their children from a young age so that they can afford a deposit on their first house. Planning a savings schedule is a good idea, but check in with the bank of mum and dad first, as they may have enough to give you a head start on your deposit.
- Spreadsheets will be your best friend. For one month, keep every single receipt for everything you buy and every bill you pay for. Sit down and input these into an accounting spreadsheet so you can see exactly where every penny is going. You may find that on paper you have a huge disposable income, but in reality, all those little receipts for coffees or lunches out may be chipping away at potential savings you could be making.
- Open a second bank account. If you already have a savings account, open a second one that is specifically set aside for saving your deposit. If you’re bad at saving money, give the card to your parents and tell them not to give it back until you’ve saved your deposit goal. Out of sight, out of mind!
Every time you save money on a cup of coffee while at work, or bring a packed lunch, put the money you didn’t spend into your savings account. The goal is to save up as fast as possible and by switching the way you live around for a while, you can make sizable deposits into your house savings account.