Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Saving for your first house...

To all my first time home buyers---

The days of 100% financing have BEEN gone, my friends!  You must have at least 3% of the purchase price of a home as your down payment.

Next to correcting your credit, saving for a down payment is probably one of the hardest things to do when it comes to buying your first house.  It all boils down to changing the way you think about money.  If you are really tired or renting and are ready to jump into the home ownership pool, then you must be ready to pack that lunch everyday, wash your own car, style your own hair, make your own coffee and take a pass on happy hour at the club.  You can do it!!!  

Here's some good ideas to help you get your ducks in a row:

1. Meet with a loan officer to review your credit and overall financial picture so that you can formulate a plan. (Jacqueline Marion at Wells Fargo: 213-321-3723 or jacqueline.a.marion@wellsfargo.com) Without a plan, there is no house.

2. How much cash do you need and how long will it take you to save it? Remember that you will need to save more than just your down payment--I like to keep at least a 4 month reserve just in case the plumbing goes out or there's a leak, or I get sick and can't work....anything can happen!  Be prepared.

3. Ask relatives if they would like to contribute.  Don't be embarrassed! The worst they can do is say NO...then at least you'll know. But I think you'll be surprised what you can get if you just ask.

4. Can you tap into your investment plans at work--401k, IRA, etc.?  Some plans let you take a loan with low interest when you are buying a home. It only takes a few minutes, call and find out what your options are!

5. What can you sell?  Do you really need that Flat Screen, fancy car or those CDs/DVDs?  Downsize EVERYTHING if you can!!  You could even have a yard sale every Saturday for the next month. see how much you can make.

6. Get a second job. What can you make and sell?  Get your side hustle on!

7.  Change the withholding on your federal and state taxes on your salary. You can change it back once you're in the house.

I hope this is helpful.  The bottom line is that once you truly decide that you are really ready to take the leap--it will happen!  Push to make it happen!!  All things are possible!!

Hey...I believe if you have at least a 580 credit score, $10k and an open mind to location--you can buy a home!

Please write and let me know if you have ideas to add to this list from your own experience.  I want to hear it all!


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