Saving up enough money to buy your first home is no simple task, especially in today’s economy. While we’re all used to creating budgets and tucking money away for a rainy day, no one said you had to approach the process in such a traditional way. If you push yourself to think outside of the box, you might be surprised what other options you have available!

 

Crowdsourcing

There’s no doubt that at least a handful of your social media connections has either shared a page or started their own to raise money for a cause they care about, an artist they support or a stranger in need, so why not try using it to raise money for your dream home? Websites like Feather the Nest and Hatch My House help wannabe home buyers raise money for their downpayment by using the concept of crowdsourcing so what are you waiting for? Create your account and check it out!

Ask The Seller

If a seller wants to wrap up a deal quickly, they might be willing to assist buyers when it comes to closing costs so why not ask? If you have less to pay in closing costs, you’ll have more money to put towards your deposit. Talk to your real estate agent to learn more about your options when it comes to negotiations.

Take Advantage Of Special Lender Programs

The Ontario government created the Ontario Home Ownership Savings Plan (OHOSP) to encourage first-time homebuyers to enter the real estate market. The Plan can be opened at any financial institution and is essentially a savings account. It earns interest at the rate the institution is offering, and since the OHOSP is not a tax shelter, any interest earned is taxable. Depending on your income, a maximum annual contribution to the plan could give you an Ontario Tax Credit of up to $500 ($1,000 per couple) on your income tax return. To qualify, your net income must not exceed $40,000 ($80,000 per couple). There is no limit to how much you contribute, but the credit is based on a maximum contribution of $2,000 ($4,000 per couple) per year. You may make contributions for up to 5 consecutive years, and once it’s closed, you must purchase within 2 years after that.

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