We're always looking for new and innovative ways to save money and saving on rent can be a large part of our overall savings plan. Like many of us, renting has become a way of life and this often stifles our ability to add meaningful amounts to our home down payment savings plan. But there are ways to save money on your rent and still save money towards your home down payment. Let's explore some of the options that are available.
Save Money By Getting A Roommate
Clearly the idea of getting a roommate to share rental expenses with is one of the easiest ways to add additional savings to your home down payment fund. There are always issues that need to be overcome when considering this option, but if you're currently paying $1,000 a month in rent and this is a way to save half of that it might be worth the possible downsides. If you have someone equally sharing expenses with you that means that your savings plan increases in significant amounts on a monthly basis. If you're leery about the possibility of sharing your home with a stranger, talk to family members or friends who may also be considering how to save money for a new home. Sharing of utilities, food expenses, rental expenses, and even driving back and forth to errands can help you save even faster for your home down payment.
Move In With Your Parents
You may consider moving in with your parents, a friend, or other family member. Generally you'll pay significantly less money on a month to month basis if you're sharing a home with a parent or family member. You might not even be paying any rent per se but rather contributing to the household in other ways instead. The best way to save money on your rent is to pay no rent at all!
Saving Money On Maintenance
if you're living in an apartment that isn't suitable for consideration for a roommate, talk to your landlord about some of the things you can do to lower their expenses and at the same time save you money towards your rent. Landlords generally have the responsibility for shoveling snow, yard maintenance and other chores that you could easily do yourself and ask for a discount on your rent. Assuming that your landlord is spending at least $100 per month on yard maintenance (and in many areas this is a low figure) this could save you $1,200 a year and significantly impact your home down payment savings plan.
Downgrade To A Smaller Apartment & Save Money
If you're currently living in an apartment that has a spare bedroom, an additional bath or other "niceties" that add to the rent you can consider a smaller apartment with fewer perks if you don't want to consider a roommate. If you're living in a two bedroom apartment and you're by yourself moving into a one bedroom apartment can result in a savings of $200 per month or more. Check out the market in your area and find out what the price ranges are on studio apartments, one bedroom apartments and two bedroom apartments and find out if moving into a smaller unit will save you a significant amount of money. While you may feel a little more cramped, making this concession can quickly help you build up your home down payment savings meaning you'll get into your new home sooner.
Many times within a single town you can find apartment rentals that are lower prices depending on the neighborhood. Often landlords need to make concessions in areas where schools are not convenient, stores are not close by or public transportation is scant. You can take advantage of these lower rentals and build up your home down payment savings by doing so. Look around your town for lower rate rentals and carefully consider if one of them might be right for your savings goals and if so move and begin adding to your savings today.
Choose Another Town
Many towns that are close to colleges have a high concentration of stores and malls or have a strong public transportation system can boost their rents accordingly. If you are living in one of the many towns that offer a lot of benefits and you don't necessarily need all of these conveniences, you may want to consider moving to another town. It's easy to fall in love with a home because the town has a lot to offer in terms of services and benefits, but if you're working towards saving for a down payment for a new home, you might want to consider forgoing some of these benefits to take advantage of saving money faster.
The long term benefits of home ownership should be your primary "looking glass" as your considering ways of saving money. We need to take into consideration that short term discomfort whether that's having a roommate, moving in with a friend or family member or even moving to a location that we're unfamiliar with has the primary goal of owning your home. Minor inconveniences today mean that your dream of owning your own home is realized sooner.
Keeping your eye on the long term goal makes everything tolerable. While you might not be excited about any of the possibilities of saving money on your rent, the end goal of owning your own home must be the overriding factor in strengthening your desire to make a minor sacrifice today to realize your dreams of home ownership.
This article is written by guest author Doreen Martel exclusively for Save For House.