Buying a house can be an exciting process, but before you head out the door to start looking at prospective properties, it’s important to know how much “house” you can afford. That $600,000 house that you saw last weekend just might be the property of your dreams, but it might turn out that you can only afford a $450,000 property. If you know that beforehand, you can end up experiencing a lot less frustration in your search.
Using A Home Budget Calculator
The purpose of a home budget calculator is to help you fit all of your budget items within your income before you go shopping. If you are just in love with a particular house and want to make that mortgage payment into your budget, the calculator also offers you some tips for reducing some of the other areas in your budget. Examples of potential savings include changing your insurance providers, changing your wireless phone plan, choosing to eat at home more often rather than spending money in restaurants for costlier meals.
Every household is different, which means that each family’s spending priorities are going to be unique. However, it’s going to be crucial to make decisions that are the best use of your money, especially if you are considering adding a hefty mortgage payment to your budget. Here are some questions to consider:
You have a car that is six years old, with over 200,000 kilometers on it. You have the choice between putting $10,000 down on a new luxury sedan or paying $10,000 cash on a used car that only has 80,000 kilometers on it. Which is the better choice given the fact that you also want to buy a new house? If you finance a luxury sedan, that’s another payment coming out as much — as much as $500 depending on the loan that you sign. If you can get the house that you want, isn’t it worth driving an older car?
You’re currently paying $12,000 per year into your retirement fund. You could trim that — but instead of pocketing the money, you could use it to make extra principal payments on the house so you’re not paying as much interest over the amortization of the loan.
These are just two decisions that a free home budget calculator can help you make as you ponder the decision ahead of you. Understanding how these different factors intersect inside your budget is just one benefit that this sort of calculator can provide for you. Before you ask a lender for a pre-approval letter, figure out what you can afford, so that home shopping will be exciting for your family instead of an exercise in futility.