Pierre C. Rumpf | Manchester-by-the-Sea Real Estate, Effex Real Estate, Beverly Real Estate


The factor that has the most impact on your home search is your finances. You’ll need to save a significant amount of money. It’s not easy to save when you have continuous monthly bills and responsibilities. Read on for tips on how to get your finances under control in order to save the amount of money it takes to buy a home.  


Do A Budget  



Once you have decided to buy a home, the first thing you should do is take a good look at your finances. A budget is critical when you buy a house because it tells you how much you’ll have to spend on your mortgage. Doing this ahead of time will allow you to maximize your income and make adjustments ahead of time as needed. Don’t forget that even though you’re buying a home, you still need some savings in addition to all of your other monthly expenses. Your budget should be outlined as follows:


  • Necessities
  • Monthly utility spending 
  • Insurance bills
  • Entertainment expenses
  • Grocery spending


Basically, you want to write down how much money is coming in and where all of the money is going. That’s a budget in a nutshell. See where you can cut back. What you’re left with is the amount you can save each month. You may want to do this on a percentage basis rather than a flat dollar amount. 


Get A Separate Account


The most straightforward things to do when you start saving for a home is to put all of your money for your house fund into a separate account. This way you can automatically transfer money in, and you’ll be less likely to spend any of the money if you don’t see it.


Sacrifice The Small Things


Can you take some hand me downs for your kids? Maybe you can start packing a lunch for work instead of buying lunch. Can you cut the cord on cable? It may be hard to sacrifice small luxuries, but these expenses can add up. If you cut these out of your budget, you’ll have a little more wiggle room to save for a home purchase. You’ll be surprised how much money you can save just by doing little things. Your morning latte is probably around $5. You could save at least $25 per week by merely making coffee at home! That’s a saving of over 1,200 per year!   


While saving for a home can seem overwhelming, if you take it in small chunks, you’ll be see the results of your efforts rather quickly. 



You’ve moved most of your holiday and birthday shopping online with great results, so why are you hesitant to embrace online grocery shopping?

While the "on-line" part might be new, the delivery part was a staple of family life in yesteryear. The milkman delivered bottles of liquid freshness to the doorstep daily, and the greengrocer hawked his vegetables at your back door. Even the baker delivered fresh bread to your table, and the butcher cut to order and delivered whatever was available.

Then came the “modern” era of supermarkets and big cart shopping. Gone were the days of opening your front door to find the crate of fruit or haggling over a cup of coffee with the produce farmer. The new way to buy food was to make one trip to a large grocery store, fill the cart from shelves stacked with multiple options, gather fruits and vegetables shipped from far lands whether in-season or not, then stand in line to pay for it, let the box-boy or bag-girl pack it up for you and deliver it to your car. Sometimes they even helped you put it in the trunk. Then, when you arrived home, you called to the kids and your spouse to help you bring in the groceries.

With a few adjustments, this is still the norm for most Americans. But it doesn't have to be. You could just have the best of both worlds: all the choices available from a large supermarket with the convenience of home delivery.

Online shopping

Grocery shopping via online portals typically falls into three categories: online only stores; supermarkets with online pickup or delivery services; shopping and delivery services.

  • Online only. As the name indicates, these stores do not exist as brick and mortar. Clients order and pay via a website and products arrive at their doorstep. At one time, online portals offered only dry goods since shipping in warm or cold seasons would not affect the product. Now, however, many online grocers offer packaged meals with fresh meat and produce packaged especially to arrive farm fresh and ready to cook.
  • Supermarkets. Not to be outdone by the convenience of online shopping, grocery stores and supermarket chains began offering online services for order with convenience pick up in designated store locations. Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods chain spurred even more competition in the online ordering arena. Some stores also offer preferential parking for online order customers. Other stores now offer delivery for a fee, even same-day delivery, and a short delivery window, so you're not stuck at home waiting.
  • Services. To fill the gap, shopper and delivery services like Insta-Cart and Shipt will shop for you at stores that don't offer delivery. 

If you're pressed for time and are looking for a new way to add more time to your life, try out one of these services.


There are more cleaning supplies on the market than ever before. If you walk down the cleaning section of Target you'll find an array of brooms, scrubbers, and solutions that are all variations on the same simple ideas. Furthermore, these products have begun capitalizing on single-use components like a sweeper with throwaway pads or disposable dusters. All of these expenses add up and before you know it you're spending up to $70 each month just on cleaning supplies. Fortunately, many frugal consumers have noticed this trend and have come up with creative ways to save money on cleaning. In this article, we'll cover some frugal cleaning products and solutions that will save you a ton of money at the checkout line.

Sweeping, dusting, and mopping

Let's face it, the Swiffer is a great invention. It mops, sweeps, and dusts without the mess of a bucket of water. Plus it's lightweight and versatile making it useful for many surfaces around the home. The down side? Having to buy all of those expensive replacement pads. If you're like me, you feel a twinge of guilt whenever you throw out at item that seems wasteful. For me, cleaning supplies are the epitome of wastefulness. So, instead of using the throwaway pads you could do a a few things. First, you could buy a reusable pad online. Some are designed to fit various sweepers. Alternatively, there are some cloths that you can buy at your local dollar store that will fit onto your sweeper just fine. Once one gets dirty, put the next one on and sink wash them all when you're done. The other option is to knit or crochet your own sweeper cover. There are lots of patterns online that will help you get started, plus a hand-made cloth adds more meaning to the mundane work of sweeping the house. For those spots you don't dust with your sweeper-duster (like a TV, or the tops of picture frames), you could always dust with your used dryer sheets that you'd otherwise just toss in the trash. Keep them in a bag in your cabinet so you remember to use them.

Go paperless

Paper towels and napkins are always expensive and seldom on sale. Plus, all that paper usage does a number on the environment. Instead of reaching for a paper towel at dinner, keep a stack of microfiber cloths, handkerchiefs, or hand towels. When this isn't possible, like in the case of a big cookout, use choose-a-size paper towels to get more usage out of a roll. And speaking of choosing a size, the next time you buy sponges or "magic erasers," cut them in half to double the length of time you can use them.

Cleaning solutions

Making your own cleaning solutions has many benefits. First, you get to save money because the supplies tend to be cheap, household items. Second, you get to avoid all of the harsh chemicals that are often added to commercial cleaners, helping your health and the environment. Third, you can make them in bulk and not have to worry about them running out. Recipes for homemade cleaning solutions and air fresheners are abundant online. In general, however, they rely on a few simple ingredients: water, vinegar, baking soda, and some type of citrus like lemons, limes, or oranges.



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