You read that right! First-time buyers across the country are
getting creative when it comes to saving the necessary down payment to
buy a home.
Many couples are asking their wedding guests to contribute to their
“Down Payment Fund” rather than fulfilling a traditional registry. This
is fueled by the fact that many couples live together prior to marriage
and already have the necessary items to make a house a home…they just need the house!
The average wedding in the United States has 120 guests who give
wedding gifts valued, on average, at $186. This means that couples could
walk away from their nuptials with over $22,000 towards their down
Services like HomeFundMe allow friends, family members, and
almost anyone else in a buyer’s network to contribute funds toward the
buyer’s down payment. Contributors can determine, at the time of their
donation, if their gifts are ‘conditional’ or ‘non-conditional’ on the
beneficiary buying a home.
According to a recent Wall Street Journalarticle, “about
400 borrowers have used HomeFundMe to help buy homes since the program
launched in October and on average, they raise about $2,500.” The
article went on to explain that most borrowers use these funds in
combination with their personal savings to shorten the time needed to
achieve their goal of homeownership.
There are more and more programs surfacing from lenders that allow buyers to put down as little as 3% to buy their dream home. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loan programs require 3% down payments, while FHA programs require as little as 3.5%, and VA Loans are often approved with 0% down!
Gone are the days of 20% down or no loan! If your dreams include
buying a home of your own in the next year, you can get creative with
your down payment savings to make it happen!