Tips for finding out if you're financially ready to buy a house
With 50% of millennials living from paycheck to paycheck, owning a home is a daunting financial commitment. Your new property may come with a lot of maintenance costs, taxes and bills. So how you know if you're financially ready to take the plunge?
Save up a hefty down payment for the best interest rate
To get the best possible interest rate on your mortgage, you should have enough cash saved to cover a 20% down payment. Closing costs may also set you back; generally you'd have to foot about 2-5% of the total price of your home. You shouldn't be spending more than 28% of your gross income on your mortgage, so make sure your loan estimate determines the price range of your property and not the other way around. Your dream home can never be a reality unless the numbers add up.
Have an emergency fund stashed away
Having an emergency fund can provide you with a safety net when unforeseen costs arrive. You should plan on having about 6-9 months of living expenses stashed away just in case.
Don't be caught off guard with maintenance costs
Maintenance costs also needs to be factored into your financial planning. Take into account any work that needs to be done on the property. That includes any aging appliances like the boiler or the roof. Don't get stung by the hidden costs of up keep.
Owning your own place does involve making some financial sacrifices, but with some sufficient budgeting, you can give yourself a good start on the property ladder.
Click through this slideshow to see son surprise parents with a check to pay off mortgage.
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