Living In Oakland Park

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Désirée Ávila, REALTOR®

How to Save for a Down Payment on a House


The Rent Trap

Are you stuck in a rent trap?

If you are renting you are paying 100% interest, earning 0% equity and are guaranteed to be the victim of inflation. You are stuck in a rent trap wasting away your time and money instead of building equity in a home you own.

The more rent you pay the more wealth you are building for your landlord and his or her family. So that begs that question, why would you want to keep building wealth for someone else? Why would you keep paying rent since renting nowadays, especially in South Florida, is the same if not more than paying a mortgage?

Homeowners Net Worth Much Higher Than Renters


Homeowners net worth on average is 45 TIMES MORE than a renter’s. If that alone is not reason enough to start thinking about homeownership, I don’t know what is!

This is just one of the advantages of being a homeowner. Owning your own home has numerous advantages over renting. You can read about more about them in this article :

Read also : 8 Reasons to Buy a House Instead of Renting

You Don’t Need 20% Down To Buy a House

A lot of people think that they need 10%, 20% or more to buy a home. In some cases people might need 20% down, but in most cases they don’t. There are loan programs that have down payments as low as 3.5.%. On a $350K home, that is just $12,250. Plus figure in another $12,000 or so in closing costs making it $24,500 to get buy a home.

$24,000 is not a small amount of money, but it is not an unreachable amount either. With a little savings savvy you can make your dream of owning a home a reality.

The list below will give you some ideas on how to save. If you can think of any others, please share them in the comments section. 

9 Different Ideas To Save For a Down Payment on a House

#1 Stay Home

Do more things at home.

When you leave your house it will, most likely, cost you money in some way or another.  Plan to stay home more often to cut the expenses of going out. Some ways you can save by staying home are :

  • Eat out less, cook at home more.
  • Watch movies on TV instead of going out to the movies.
  • Do staycations instead of vacations. There are plenty of amazing things to do in our own backyard if we just look for them!

Staying home doesn’t mean not having a life outside your home. It just means being a little more strategic about when and how you spend your money when you do choose to go out.

#2 Do Gigs

In your spare time employ your gifts and talents into making money.  You can babysit, tutor, do odd jobs, drive for Uber or Lyft, or any or many different things to pull in some extra cash. When you have it, stash it and forget it exists. Keep saving away until you’ve reached your goal.

#3 Ask For Money Instead of Gifts

On birthdays, holidays and celebrations use a poem to ask for money toward a down payment instead of gifts. If you convey to people in a cute, light or humorous way that money toward a home would be the greatest gift of all.  You will find most people would be more than happy to contribute to your future instead of buying you a gift that won’t have any future value.

#4 Get A Piggy Bank

Saving to buy a house or home savings concept
Spare change adds up.

Spare change adds up. Get a good ol’ fashion piggy bank and put your spare change in it. You will be surprised at how much you can save this way.


#5 Stop Buying Everything in Sight

Impulse buying is one of the quickest and easiest ways to blow your money. Savings requires careful and planned effort. Challenge yourself to not spend on anything you don’t need. Do treat yourself once in a while, but the treat should be the exception and not the rule.

#6 Downsize


If there is a way you can bunk up with a friend or live with family for a little bit, do it. Sharing living expenses for a little while will make the possibility of owning a home a reality more quickly. Just remember to stash away what you save – don’t spend it!

#7 Unsubscribe to Everything

Everything nowadays seems to be subscription or membership based. If you use something and the subscription or membership is worthwhile then keep it. But if it is a gym membership that you don’t use or cable TV that you never watch, then cut it out of your life. Take what you were spending and stash it away with all your other Benjamins.

#8 Use Coupons

Coupons can save you quite a bit of money on life’s daily necessities. Learn to coupon and stash the savings.

#9 Sell Everything

Yard sales are a great way to sell your unused stuff.

Well I don’t literally mean sell everything. I mean sell everything you don’t use. We all have unused stuff we haven’t looked at for years and in many cases don’t even remember we own. Do an inventory of your unwanted stuff and sell, sell, sell!

Remember to Celebrate

Keep track of the money you have been saving and celebrate periodically. However, save the big part-ay for the day you close on your new home. Now that is cause for celebration!

Happy Saving!
Désirée Ávila. Realtor®


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*LivingInOaklandPark.com is an independent publication, not affiliated with the City of Oakland Park.

About the Author

Désirée Ávila has called Oakland Park her home for over 31 years. In addition to publishing LivingInOaklandPark.com , Désirée publishes three other blogs and has been featured in print publications, locally and abroad.  Désirée was an award winning teacher for 10 years and has a doctoral level education in Educational Technology.  She is currently a licensed Florida Realtor® and is committed to a high-level of professionalism and to helping others with their real estate endeavors through education.  Désirée is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, French and Italian.


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