So you want to be part of the great Australian tradition of owning your own home? You know you’ll need from five to 20 per cent of the purchase price to secure a home loan for your very own bricks and mortar, but how do you save for a house deposit when you’re living pay check to pay check? Spending less and saving more goes without saying, but here are some other clever ideas to get you into your own home faster.
Meet Marissa Johnston, she’s a professional house sitter who looks after other people’s homes and pets while saving for her own deposit. She admits it can be a tough gig at times, but knows it will be worth it once she’s saved enough for a house deposit and is happily settled in her own home.
Yes, it’s a thing – buying a house to rent to others while leasing another place for yourself. You buy a bargain in a suburb you may not want to live in yourself, but use it as an investment and upgrade later. They say it’s a Gen Y thing, and 23-year-old Lauren Lovelace is its poster girl – she’s got two investment properties in Perth and plans to upgrade and buy more. It's not an option for everyone and you have to make sure you've crunched the numbers, but there are plenty who are choosing this route.
Many Australians are using online sites such as Uber, Airbnb and Airtasker to make a little on the side. Marcus Cook uses Airtasker to take on odd jobs – everything from gardening to fixing taps – and added $5000 to his income in just over a year. That’s a big boost to anyone’s house deposit savings.
Can’t afford a house on your own? Consider joint ownership and split the costs like siblings Rebecca and David Leitch, who decided to go halves in a mortgage. Sharing the load will help you get your foot in the property market while you continue to save.
Some young Australians have even turned to crowdfunding campaigns to bump up their savings, and when it comes to these you're limited only by your imagination – just ask Duncan Hellmers and Caitlin Argyle. Duncan designed a clock to raise enough for his first loan, while Caitlin asked for donations in exchange for renting her home. Saving for a house deposit can be a daunting and seemingly impossible dream, but with a little bit of creativity you can start your journey and reach your goal sooner. Combine all of the above and not only will you get your first home, you might even become a property tycoon.
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