A few months ago on the YouTube channel, I have with my husband we posted a video about buying our first house as a young couple.
Looking back that video was a little vague. In this post, I want to give a little more insight and hopefully some help and encouragement for other young couples who are buying a house.
Avoid Debt in Preparation for Buying a House
Before I met my husband this was my goal. That is why I didn’t have student debt, which helped a lot when we decided to live on one income.
We also drove used cars that we paid for with cash. Additionally, our Visa’s had a combined limit of $1500. As a result, we pretty much cash flowed all of
Our rent was $705 for the the first year and a half of our marriage while I was finishing school and my husband worked. I also got pregnant during that time.
Our finances were very tight but we were not gaining debt.
Another event that helped us be able to actually save was, my husband getting a better paying job.
This also meant we had to move. It actually worked out for us to live temporarily with family which allowed us to save up a downpayment, live closer to my husbands work and buy our house.
Save Money from Each Paycheck
In order to make sure we were saving and not spending we automatically drafted a portion from each paycheck into our savings.
We found it really helpful to set up an appointment with our bank to review our finances and determine ways we could save more money or change how our accounts were set up.
The hardest part of buying a house is the sacrifices required. For us that meant not buying new clothes, hardly going out to eat, sticking to a grocery budget, not going on trips, not going out to the movies, and making coffee at home.
We were not perfect at this, at times we splurged on things we needed or wanted. For the most part, we were pretty strict with our spending.
One thing Dave Ramsey says that I try to remember is: “Live like no one else so later you can live like no one else”.
Get Preapproved for a Mortgage
Before talking to a realtor we got preapproved for a mortgage. We ended up going with a credit union my dad recomended. As typically credit unions are more willing to work with individuals as opposed to a bank which has more rigid qualifiers to giving out loans.
Find a Realtor You Trust
Once we had a mortgage in place we contacted a realtor our family had used in the past. We had confidence that she would be a great realtor.
She showed us houses within our budget and helped us as first time home buyers adjust our expectations.
Be Patient and Trust God When Buying a House
Finally be patient while going through the house buying process. In our experience it was very emotionally draining.
We started looking in June, took a break and finally found our house in August. The moment we walked into our house we both knew it was the one. Even our 10 month old daughter expressed delight.
We competed against one other offer and the owner ended up choosing us.
Our budget was also very small as we were approved only on one income. That made finding a decent home a challenge. However, with a lot of prayer and trusting God to help us find the right home, everything worked out and we found our current house.
Don’t Rush into Buying a House
Looking back the whole journey of renting to buying our house was not easy. Even now owning a home is a huge responsibility.
That being said don’t underestimate the benefits of renting. It allows you to save, maintenance is not your responsibility and there are no property taxes.
I understand the desire to want to own a home and sometimes it is more prudent to buy a house sooner rather than later. The longer you can save and build up a good down payment (like 20%) you can avoid needing mortgage loan insurance.