Are you dreaming of buying your own home and wondering about how you’ll save for a down payment? You’re not alone. Some people think about tapping into their 401(k) savings to make it happen. But before you decide to dip into your retirement to buy a home, be sure to consider all possible alternatives and talk with a financial expert. Here’s why.
The Numbers May Make It Tempting
The data shows many Americans have saved a considerable amount for retirement (see chart below):
It can be really tempting when you have a lot of money saved up in your 401(k) and you see your dream home on the horizon. But remember, dipping into your retirement savings for a home could cost you a penalty and affect your finances later on. That’s why it’s important to explore all your options when it comes to saving for a down payment and buying a home. As Experian says:
“It’s possible to use funds from your 401(k) to buy a house, but whether you should depends on several factors, including taxes and penalties, how much you’ve already saved and your unique financial circumstances.”
Alternative Ways To Buy a Home
- FHA Loan: FHA loans allow qualified buyers to put down as little as 3.5% of the home’s price, depending on their credit scores.
- Down Payment Assistance Programs: There are many national and local programs that can help first-time and repeat homebuyers come up with the necessary down payment.
Above All Else, Have a Plan
No matter what route you take to purchase a home, be sure to talk with a financial expert before you do anything. Working with a team of experts to develop a concrete plan prior to starting your journey to homeownership is the key to success. Kelly Palmer, Founder of The Wealthy Parent, says:
“I have seen parents pausing contributions to their retirement plans in favor of affording a larger home often with the hope they can refinance in the future… As long as there is a tangible plan in place to get back to saving for their retirement goals, I encourage families to consider all their options.”
If you’re still thinking about using your 401(k)-retirement savings for a home down payment, consider all your options and work with a financial professional before you make any decisions.
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If you’re reading this late at night and want to start now, first send me an email, then focus on these items of the home buying process: 1) Download my Home Buyers Guide to learn general information (if you’re into doing your own research). 2) Talk to a quality mortgage lender and get pre-approved for financing. 3) Search for homes currently on the market to get a feel for the types of homes, locations, and price points available. 4) Read my Denver real estate blog (updated daily!) to further educate yourself about the market and relevant topics for home buyers. And of course, when in doubt, just call me and I will help you with each step of your journey.
When It Is Time To Sell Your Home
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