Pierre C. Rumpf's Blog
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:
- 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.
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.