• Arthur Panagopoulos

Money-saving Tips for Renters in Dutchess County

Get a roommate

One of the easiest ways to cut your rent and household expenses in half and save some dough is by finding a compatible roommate. Think half the rent cost and half the utility bills. That adds up to some serious savings that you can apply toward your down payment to buy a home in Lagrangeville NY.

Say goodbye to credit card debt

This one might seem counter-intuitive — after all, you’re trying to save money for that dream home, right? It’s important to remember that your credit score and debt-to-income ratio are key factors that lenders consider as they’re qualifying you for a loan. When it comes time to shop for real estate in Dutchess and get a mortgage, you’ll be glad you tackled that outstanding debt ahead of time. You may be able to score a lower interest rate!

Rent to own

If this is an option, why not go for it? This is an option for those who are interested in a property but still need to save up cash for a down payment or build their credit score over time. When you’re in a rent-to-own agreement, you typically pay a one-time, non-refundable fee called “option money,” which gives you the opportunity to purchase the house in the future. Usually this price ranges from 2 to 7 percent of the purchase price — which you and the seller will agree upon.

Budget basics

Now that you’ve set a big financial goal, it’s important to figure out a budget and stick to it. A good rule of thumb to follow is the 50/30/20 rule, where you allocate a portion of your paycheck into three categories:

· 50 percent towards essentials, like food and housing

· 30 percent towards lifestyle, like dinner out or other entertainment

· 20 percent towards financial priorities, such as debt, student loans, retirement and savings

Ditch the unnecessary

You might need to make those Starbucks runs a little less frequently. Sure those triple caramel extra frothy lattes might be delicious, but how awesome would it be making your own latte in your OWN kitchen, in your OWN home that you purchased.

Plan a garage sale

Believe it or not, a garage sale can put some serious cash in your pocket and help you save money for that house while renting. Since you’re a renter, you might not have the space or be allowed to run a garage sale out of your rental, so ask family and friends if they have a garage to spare for a weekend.

If you’re renting a house, check with your landlord that it’s okay to run a garage sale on the property. Not only will you be getting rid of stuff you don’t need, when you finally move in to your hard-earned home — you’ll save time and money with less stuff to move.

Save your tax refund

Covid has really made folks get creative in stretching that dollar, so if you are in a position to stash away your tax refund, DO IT Sure, it’s nice to get that refund check every tax season. A shopping spree, a new bedroom set, maybe a beach vacation — those are all fun things that you can do with the money. Resist the urge to spend it on the impractical and instead stick it in your savings account for your future home.

Start small, baby steps towards building those savings will eliminate that frustration and stress. By applying some saving-savvy tips to your budget, you’re walking towards that down payment to your new home in the Hudson Valley!