Now is the time to start saving for that down payment even though you may be wondering how you are going to be able to save enough in time for your home purchase. You can and should save now for that down payment and there are ways to see progress even faster.
Make it the goal or resolution for your family this year to do what it takes to get your down payment saved up quicker. With small sacrifices like skipping your daily coffee run to lowering your monthly bills, you can start saving every extra dime towards your down payment and the house of your dreams. What will it take to save your down payment faster? Here is a look at what you can do this year to make it happen.
Stop dining out
While it’s important to have some money each month that can be used for fun or entertainment, it’s time to start really limiting how often you eat out. The occasion dining out with your coworkers to nurture those relationships and having a date night with your spouse is important, but eating out daily or weekly is where you can start making a cut.
Start packing your own lunch most days and don’t worry about ordering in with everyone at the office when there is food delivery every day. When you meet friends out for a beer, eat dinner before you leave so that you’ll only be spending money on beer and shareable plates. Instead of date night at a restaurant, start trying new recipes at home and offering to cook for friends rather than dining out.
Think of all of the savings you could see when you start saving $50 extra each week or over $2k a year from dining out less often. It’s likely healthier to pack your own homemade lunch and cook your own dinner anyhow!
Watch how much you drink too
While you’re cutting back on take out and nights out to new restaurants, it’s time to start cutting back on alcohol too. It can really add up to go out for drinks regularly, while drinking at home is much more affordable. Start asking friends to stop by for a drink at your home or start saying “no” to invitations.
Drinking in moderation compared to drinking as much as you feel like could save you as much as $60 a week or $250 a month. If you give up alcohol completely, you will really save your wallet and you’ll probably notice some health benefits from cutting it out too!
Lower your monthly bills
Have you noticed that it’s not always easy to save when you don’t have much left after your monthly bills? The best way to fix this problem is to lower what you are currently spending money on each month. Do you really need cable TV or can you live with more movie rentals and time spent doing other things?
Many people cancel their cable knowing that they can watch their favorite shows with a subscription to Hulu or Netflix. Spending $10 per month on a subscription compared to hundreds each month on cable will add up in a hurry.
You can also work on cutting down on your utility use such as spending money on constant heating or cooling bills, forgetting to turn the lights off, running the washing machines too frequently or streaming too much costing you a higher internet bill.
Consider how you could save money just by making conscious decisions each day to watch the number of resources you use. Pick your favorite TV show subscription and cancel the others, and then be willing to only stream in moderation to avoid overspending on data. Watch how often you run the dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer.
Turn the heat or air down when you’re not home or you’re at work. All of these areas can help with your outgoing money each month so that you have a place to start saving for the down payment.
Change your phone plan
Do you allow your family to enjoy an unlimited phone plan or a large amount of data to enjoy? It’s time to make some hard decisions on what your family really needs right now. You need to be saving money and it’s easy to cut back on your data use by limiting mobile device use.
Start setting rules on how much each family member can use each month and when a person runs out, they have to wait for the next billing cycle. That money you were using towards expensive mobile phone plans can now be saved for that down payment.
No more Starbucks or Dry Cleaners
While you may be used to running to Starbucks for a caffeine boost before work or dropping your favorite clothes at the dry cleaner, it’s time to start thinking about these little luxuries as just that; they are luxuries. This is the time to save every time and thinking about if you could start waking up earlier to make your own coffee at home.
Take your clothes to the dry cleaner less often or start doing specialty cleaning at home. If you don’t have a washer and dryer, see if you can do your laundry at a friend or relatives house while you save up. This also applies to other luxuries throughout the week, because it’s a good time to cut back on spa treatments, hair appointments, tanning appointments, and pet grooming. The less frequent you can do these things, the more cash you can keep in your wallet.
Get rid of that gym membership
One area you may be wasting money without realizing it is with that gym membership. It’s easy to justify a gym membership, but there are plenty of exercises you can do using your own body weight, your own home, and your own neighborhood. Cancel your gym membership for a while and start thinking of ways to exercise by taking daily walks or runs, doing workout videos in your home, and lifting weights or doing pushups on your own. You don’t need to spend $60 per month on a place to walk when you have a neighborhood, or a place to lift dumbbells when you have some at home.
Between cutting your expensive cable bill and phone bill, quitting the gym and dry cleaner, eating and drinking out less, and eliminating life’s little luxuries temporarily, you can start saving all of these extra dollars towards your down payment. Now your down payment plan can be shortened with all of these extra money-saving ideas and you’ll be in your Pittsburgh dream home sooner than ever!
If you have any questions, comments, or want to make sure you have all of your bases covered when buying a home in the Pittsburgh area, Feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I am an annual top producing, full time, professional RE/MAX Realtor in the Greater Pittsburgh area. I have the most Zillow Group reviews of any individual agent in the entire state of Pennsylvania. I hold coveted real estate designations such as, CRS, ABR, GRI, SRES, e-PRO & am a member of the Institute of Luxury Home Marketing.
My 2015 stats included an average sale price to list price ratio of 98%, an average days on the marked of 41 and nearly $14 million in total production. I was also inducted into the RE/MAX Hall of Fame.
I am also the social media/technology director at RE/MAX Advanced, REALTORS. You can find me on any social media platform by searching #BrianSellsPittsburgh
I donate a portion of my commission to the Children’s Miracle Network and I am also a member of the Giveback Homes Organization and the Teacher Next Door Program.
Posted on February 21, 2017 at 2:37 pm by Brian Teyssier