Saving for your First Home

If your dreams involve buying your first Irving home, then there are a few things you can do now to make your dream a reality.

Gone are the days of no-money-down mortgage loans, and most banks are now demanding at least 20 percent down on a traditional mortgage. On a $200,000 home, that equals $20,000.

For many, these numbers make owning a home feel unattainable, but it doesn’t have to be.

The following tips will guide you when saving for your first Irving home:

  • First things first: get a grip on your financial situation. That means laying out all of your bills and debts and creating a list of your monthly debt obligations.
  • Look for areas in which you can cut back, and be realistic. Is it really necessary to have an upgraded cable package, or can you downgrade to basic cable? Is your cell phone plan working for you, or could you potentially negotiate lower monthly payments? The key is to remain open, flexible and creative.

If you currently eat out four times a week, isn’t it realistic to cut down to just two times a week? Many of us have a considerable amount of wiggle room in our budgets, but we never take the time to find areas in which we can scale back.

  • Once you have located that extra money every month, consider having the money withdrawn automatically from your checking account or paycheck each month. Most people are more likely to successfully save money if they never see it in the first place.

Ask your employer if they can set up automatic deductions from your paycheck into a savings or money market account.

  • Open a separate savings or money market account for your down payment money and do not intermingle it with your other savings. This will allow you to keep better track of your savings goals.
  • Avoid investing your down payment money in risky investments. Instead, look for conservative investments, such as money market accounts, short-term certificates of deposit or short-term bonds.
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