Paying down debt and learning to manage it can be a challenge for even the most goal-oriented person, and when you’re trying to buy a house, it’s an imperative that requires some planning. You’ll want to create a timeline for yourself that includes building up your credit, finding easy ways to save money, and figuring out which debts should be paid down first. It’s also important to get help with calculating your mortgage payment so you’ll know what to expect, and Mortgage Tailors offers several services that will assist you when you’re ready to take the leap. Presented below by Little Falls Mediation, here are some tips on how to tackle your debt over the next 6-12 months so you can buy your dream home:

Check your credit

The first thing you’ll want to do is check your credit, so it’s a good idea to download a credit monitoring app. There are several options available, and some will help you find credit cards and loans that are a good match for your needs. Once you know your number, it’s time to look for simple ways to boost it. Depending on the lender and the loan you choose, your score may need to be anywhere from 660 to 900, and you can start raising the number by disputing errors, paying bills on time, keeping your credit use low, and paying off credit cards and medical bills. 

Raise some money

Paying off credit card debt and taking care of medical bills is no easy feat, especially if you’ve relied on those cards during the pandemic. One way to tackle those bills is to earn some extra cash, and there are several simple ways you can go about it even if you work full-time, including picking up a temporary side-gig, selling clothing and accessories you no longer need on a resale app or putting your skills to use by tutoring or giving lessons online. 

You can also start saving by utilizing small methods, such as carpooling, making eco-friendly changes around the house, getting rid of subscriptions you no longer need and trying meal prep for breakfasts and lunches. 

Manage your spending

Even with some extra cash, if you don’t have a budget or spending plan in place you might find your bank account dwindling quickly each month. Sit down and add up all your income and expenses, and create a realistic budget for your family that will allow you to cut back while ensuring you still have the things you need. When it comes to grocery shopping, write out a list beforehand and stick to it. If you tend to do a lot of impulse shopping online, consider removing your credit card info from the apps you frequent to make it harder to buy on a whim.

Lastly, if you live in an apartment, you may want to consider moving to a smaller place to help save money. This may not always be possible, but it can’t hurt to look around and explore your options. Begin by looking at online listings to see what’s available in and around your area.

Know your options

Once you’re ready to start looking for a home, you’ll have several options to choose from and it’s important that you understand them. For instance, a home that’s being sold “as-is” means that even if there are costly repairs needed to remove mold, fix leaky pipes, or take care of a pest infestation, the seller won’t be responsible for them. Before you snag what appears to be a great deal, you’ll want to make sure you get an inspection. If there are smaller repairs needed that you don’t mind taking care of, you can ask the seller if they’re interested in giving you a credit.

Buying a home is a major life decision, so take some time to get your finances in order before you make a move, and talk to some professionals who can help you make the best possible decision when it comes to your loan.

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