Do you want to become a homeowner but are intimidated by the lengthy process of saving for a house? It’s possible to save up enough money to make a down payment on a house within six months.
Here’s How To Save Money For A House In Six Months:
You can save enough money for a downpayment on a house in six months by setting goals, calculating your income and expenses, budgeting, setting up a separate savings account, automating those savings, servicing debt, increasing your income, and ensuring that you’re held accountable to somebody else.
Saving up the money you need to make a downpayment on a house may seem like an incredibly daunting task, but it is possible, and every dollar saved today can save you thousands of dollars in the future. So, follow our tips for saving to buy a house in six months, and you will be thanking yourself for literally decades!
If you think that saving money for a house in six months is going to be anything but grueling and requires unwavering discipline and extreme sacrifice, you’d be wrong.
The next six months will be hard work and will put your resolve to the test – but it’s not impossible!
Read our tips below to fulfill your dream of becoming a homeowner.
The first thing that you need to do is to establish what your savings goals are.
For example, if you want to buy a $300,000 home, you need to make 20% of that payment upfront, which is $60,000. So, you need to put away at least $10,000 every month, or $2,500 a week.
Saving $2,500 a week is an incredibly ambitious target for most of us, and you may simply not be able to afford that, in which case you need to downsize to a cheaper house, or you need to extend the period over which you would like to save from six months to a year or two.
But the best idea would be to downsize your expectations because your mortgage repayments could be out of reach, and there’s no extending the repayments on that.
On the same note, it isn’t required or necessary to make the full 20% downpayment, and some people can get away with as little as 3% if they demonstrate that they have the means to make the remaining payments within the specified timeframe.
However, you would have to make additional monthly payments to a Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) to ensure that the bank’s money is safe if you default on your payments.
PMI payments are not ideal, though, and you’d be far better off without having to make the extra payments.
Once you’ve established your savings goals, it’s time to analyze the feasibility of your six-month saving strategy. Calculate how much money you are making (after taxes) on a monthly (or weekly) basis.
So, if you have a full-time job that pays $80,000 per year, you’re earning $6,666 per month. And maybe you work a freelance job on weekends that pays you an extra $1,500 per month. That means you have $8,166 to work with every month.
Now, go through your bank statements, receipts, and anything else that you have that shows what you’ve spent over the last three months.
Calculate how much money you spent in the previous month, the month before that, and the month before that to see how much money you typically spend every month and what it’s spent on – this includes credit card payments, student loans, groceries, rent, utilities, eating out, and so on.
So, let’s say all of your expenses add up to $8,000 per month. Your surplus income at the end of the month is $166, meaning that you need to save an extra $9,834 to make a downpayment on a $300,000 home.
Therefore, a $300,000 loan is simply not feasible for you. A $100,000 home, however, requires a downpayment of $20,000, which equates to saving $3,333 per month. Buying this house is a far more realistic goal, and you may be able to pull it off with a strict budget.
As you probably already know, a well-planned budget and the discipline required to stick to it are critical to any savings plan. And, if you want to save enough money for a house in six months, you need to strip it down to bare-bone expenses – every dollar counts!
There are plenty of budget templates that you can find online, but it isn’t necessarily going to help you because budgets are far easier to stick to if they’re personalized. Find a budgeting method that works for you – one that is possible to pull off.
Suppose it’s too tight, and you’re only paying rent, utilities, and servicing debt. In that case, you are very likely to miss your target and will eventually become demotivated because of your failure, which helps nobody.
However, that’s not to say don’t be ambitious with your budget. As we’ve mentioned, hard work, discipline, and sacrifice are imperative.
If you’re hoping to stick by your guns in this savings plan, you need to make sure that the money you’re setting aside is inaccessible if you want to take money out of it for “emergencies”.
This is typically easier to pull off if you have a savings account with a different bank, so transferring funds would take a day or two and will deter you from spending impulsively.
So, set up a savings account that yields a decent interest rate and has low service charges. Then focus on putting as much money into that account as possible.
The best way to stick to your savings plan is to take the act of setting money out of your hands.
This means making a request to the HR department at work and asking them to set aside a percentage of your monthly income and transfer it to your savings account.
Or you can create a debit order that automatically deducts the money from your account and transfers it to your savings account on payday.
It means that you’ll never forget to transfer the funds and that saving becomes akin to a bill – an obligation, not an option.
Saving requires sacrifice, and saving for a house in six months will require extraordinary sacrifice.
There are countless ways to save money, and it’s entirely up to you to decide what your most significant expenses are and which ones you can realistically reduce.
For example, you can stop eating out. If you’re spending $25 a week on dinner with your friends and family, you’re $100 closer to meeting your savings target. And, speaking of eating, it may also be great for your budget to sort out a meal plan.
Ensure that you don’t over-indulge and use more groceries than is necessary. Planning out your meals can go a long way towards reducing your grocery bill, and, better yet, it helps you stay healthy and lose a little bit of weight along the way!
You can also do regular spending freezes, where you don’t spend any of your disposable income at all for a while.
And you can also get rid of a few of your recurring monthly costs, such as gym memberships, streaming services, and other unnecessary bills.
Another considerable expense that you could do without is vacations and other frivolous expenses. Sped this summer at home, buy your friends inexpensive gifts for their birthdays (or make them yourself), don’t buy clothes, dye your own hair, paint your own nails (or don’t have manicures at all).
It is essential to learn how to turn down invitations to after-work drinks on a Friday and say no in general. Let your friends know that the next six months will be tight for you, and make plans to do inexpensive or free activities so that you can maintain your social life.
Go on hikes, spend more time at the beach or public parks, or take up a new hobby that won’t cost you anything.
Don’t worry; your friends will understand that you have ambitions and need time to reach your goals. They may even offer emotional support and advice that will make this period of sacrifice a bit more bearable.
One mistake that far too many people make when they begin saving for a home is to neglect their debts. Typically, they try to reduce their loan repayments to the minimum payment to save a few extra bucks here or there.
But, ultimately, you’ll be hurting yourself if this is where you decide to cut costs because it may affect your credit score if you miss payments, which means that you’ll be getting a home loan at a far higher interest rate.
Check your credit score online and make sure you do what you can to score as high as possible, and this means that you need to keep up with your monthly obligations.
If you are spending far more than necessary on debt payments every month, it isn’t the worst idea to cut back a little bit – but it is critical to maintaining a healthy balance between saving and servicing debt.
And if you’re going to be applying for a home loan in six months, it will undoubtedly work to your advantage to have a history of fulfilling your financial obligations.
Making more money will be the hardest thing to do on this list because it could be out of your hands. You may not have the time and energy to take on extra work or have maxed out your earning potential.
However, the best way to save more money is to increase your income. This would entail asking your boss for a raise or taking on a side hustle. It may be torture, but even taking on a second job or working double shifts for the next six months could take you a long way.
Not to mention, if you’re spending most of your time at work, you aren’t as focused on the sacrifices that you’re making in terms of spending.
We’ve left the most important tip for saving money for a house in six months till last. Accountability is crucial, and if you’re not accountable for sticking to your budget or making the necessary sacrifices, none of the other six tips mean a thing.
So, find a way to keep yourself motivated. Get somebody close to you to check-in and follow up on your progress and give them a license to get on your case about it. This can be a spouse, a family member, or even a friend.
But, if you’re in on this alone and are only accountable to yourself, it’s very easy to let yourself down and rationalize unnecessary expenses. But, when you buy yourself a new pair of shoes or spend the entire weekend out with your friends, and there’s someone to tell you off for doing so, you may think twice about failing to adhere to your budget.
If you’re reading this article, our budget tips and calculations may not align with the sum of money that you may be targeting. So, we’ve set out a plan to save particular dollar amounts to help you establish what is realistic for your income.
Saving $5,000 in six months requires you to put $833 aside every month. To achieve this, you would need an income of $4,165 monthly to save $5,000 in six months. It is still possible to save that $5,000 with a lower income, but it won’t be easy.
Nonetheless, if you set up an automated system that deducts the $833 for your salary every month and deposits it into your designated savings account, you should be able to live within your means by following our tips.
If you can reach your target of saving $5,000 in six months, you would be able to pay the recommended downpayment on a $25,000 home.
Saving $10,000 in six months to make a downpayment on a house requires you to set aside $1,666 every month. Therefore, because that should make up 20% of your income, you need to be earning at least $8,333 per month to be sustainable.
Saving $10,000 in six months would be enough to make the recommended downpayment on a $50,000 home.
You will need to save $2500 per month to save $15,000 in six months, which means that you have to earn an income of $12,500 or more to live comfortably while saving for a house over six months.
Saving $15,000 in six months will allow you to make the recommended downpayment on a $75,000 home.
To make the recommended downpayment of $20,000 on a $100,000 home, you will have to save $3,333 for six months. To sustainably save $3,333 every month, you need to earn $16,666.
However, remember that these are all guidelines and may not apply to you.
The 50/30/20 rule (which states that you should spend 50% of your income on rent, transport, groceries, etc.30% should be spent as disposable income, and you should save 20%) is not set in stone, and sometimes people live below their means and can save more.
Or you could be saving the money in a joint account with your spouse. Therefore you would only need to earn half of the respective incomes that we’ve mentioned.
There are plenty of nuances to these rules, and we recommend that you seek advice from a certified financial expert to curate a personalized savings plan that can help you reach your goals with each unique factor taken into account.
Saving up the money you need to buy a house in six months won’t be an easy task and requires a lot of sacrifices and strict discipline. To do so, you need to clearly define what your goals are. Calculating your income and expenses is one way to determine whether your targets are attainable, and you need to be realistic about your expectations.
You need to create a strict budget set up a separate savings account that automatically deducts a specified amount each month from your current account (or straight from your monthly salary). Then you need to start cutting costs while continuing to service your debts.
Finally, you need to be accountable and ensure that someone else holds you accountable if you fail to meet your targets.
Follow all of these tips, and you could be making that recommended downpayment on a house in no time, and many years down the line, you’ll be thanking yourself for the sacrifices that you’re about to make.