April 17, 2015 8:33 pm
1. Family Matters. Don’t be too shy or stubborn to ask your parents or other family members for help. Often, your relatives will be more than happy to help you get the home of your dreams. After all, they probably received help from family members themselves when they went to buy their first home. If you do get help from a family member, the lender will ask you to sign a form called a gift letter, attesting to the relationship. The lender may also require mom and dad to explain where they got the money and prove that they are financially able to make such a gift.
2. Dig Into Your IRA. Assuming you’ve started a retirement account with your job, this may be an easy way to get the money you need quickly. Whether it’s a 401(k), a Roth or traditional IRA, first-time homebuyers are allowed to borrow up to $10,000 for a down payment on a house without incurring a penalty. For those who are self-employed, you can also borrow up to $50,000 from your retirement fund and pay yourself back over five years at a low interest rate.
3. Add It to Your Registry. If you’re getting married, doesn’t it make more sense to ask for some help in getting a house rather than a toaster or coffee maker? Numerous mortgage companies allow those getting hitched to set up a down payment registry and many guests think it’s a great way to celebrate the joining of two people they love.
4. Take Advantage of Grants. Down payment assistance and community redevelopment programs offer affordable housing opportunities to first-time homebuyers, low-income and moderate-income individuals and families who wish to achieve homeownership.
5. Propose a Lease/Purchase Agreement. Homeowners who need to sell their home quickly may be amenable to cutting a deal with buyers on a lease/purchase agreement where the buyer rents the home they want to purchase with a percentage of the rent applied toward the down payment. If you go this route, make sure you get a contract outlining all the details so both parties are safe.
If you find that none of the above options work for your individual circumstances, there’s always the old-fashioned idea of setting up a rainy day fund by putting aside 10 percent of your paycheck each week and making your lunch instead of going out. Forget that vacation and walk or ride your bike instead of using the car. It may seem like a lot, but the sacrifice will be well worth it when you’re inside your very own home.
Contact our office today for more tips on finding the funds for your down payment.
Published with permission from RISMedia.