Jane Cheetham - RE/MAX Acclaim



Posted by Jane Cheetham on 7/23/2019

Planning important purchases like your first new car or home are significant steps in life. While the purchase itself is a thrill ride, lack of planning may end up in buyer's remorse. To avoid such a pitfall, you need to impart a few guidelines around those larger purchases to protect yourself from disappointment or frustration later. Taking stock of your financial goals and your current situation can clear the way to confidence when shopping for your dream car, home, or other more significant purchases.

Plan, Plan, Plan

Having a written spending plan that you can use to guide your decisions gives you a snapshot of where you are currently. Laying out a 6-12-month plan for your income and expenses will allow you to determine when you start shopping or even, make an offer on something. Remember a plan is only as good as the information you have, so make sure you keep yourself up to date on all aspects of your financial life. This includes retirement accounts, debts, interest rates on those debts, any fluctuation in income, and any possible changes in your cost of living expenses (rent, insurance rates or gas prices). Any of these things have the potential to delay or accelerate your purchase. When you are elevating larger purchases, remember the monthly payment is not the only expense associated with the purchase. 

The Big Picture for Housing Expenses

When it comes to purchasing a home, it may be a bit more complicated. You will need to ask for information from those in the real estate and mortgage industry to get the information you need to see the big picture. Again, the monthly payment is not the only thing you will be paying each monthly, especially if you are currently a renter. Knowing what expenses, you will be taking on is essential. Besides the money you will need to purchase a home initially there are other increases to your monthly expenses as a homeowner. Home owner's insurance is more expensive than renter's insurance; make sure your spending plan adjusts accordingly. You will want to think about your commute to work if you have one, you may want to budget more for gas if your trip to work will be longer from your new address. Sometimes the utility costs will be lower especially if you are buying an energy efficient or more modern home.

Home buying, when you have processed all the information and are confident financially, is an exciting adventure. When you reach that point, contact a real estate professional that knows the community where you want to live.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Jane Cheetham on 5/2/2017

Once you move in with a partner, you know you have reached an important milestone in your relationship. For the first time, you could be talking about money with your partner. Whether youíre moving into an apartment or buying a home together, itís important to break down how youíll merge your finances together. 


While itís one of the least romantic conversations that youíll probably have as a couple, sharing your financial situation is one of the most vital. Below youíll find some tips on starting that conversation and making it a smooth one.


Be Honest


In any relationship, honesty and communication are key. This is especially true when it comes to finances. Thereís a lot that goes into your own financial picture, and itís important that you share that with your partner. This is important for everything that will happen in the future including purchasing a home. Some things that your partner should know:


  • How much loan debt you have
  • A rough idea of your credit score and history
  • Your income
  • Your spending habits
  • Your saving habits

Itís important to know how another personís habits will affect you as a whole when youíre thinking of making an investment together like a piece of property. Everyone handles money differently, and you should know how someoneís spending habits meshes with yours. Do they live paycheck to paycheck? Do they save money regularly? Are they financially strained? All of these questions help you to understand where you are similar and where you are different when it comes to money.



Have A Plan For How Youíll Divide Expenses


It may seem like a 50/50 split on expenses makes the most sense. For many couples it does. In other situations, if one person makes more money, they may need to pay a bit more of the costs. Some couples have one person pay the rent while the other takes the utilities on as an expense. Take amounts and percentages that you feel comfortable with and do what wrks best for the both of you. 


Remember that chores count too when it comes to dividing up the ďexpenses.Ē This is just an extra tip that will help you to build a stronger relationship in the long term and help to save arguments.


Use A Joint Account For Expenses


You should still keep your own bank accounts when you move in with a significant other.  All of your money shouldnít be funneled into one singular account. Create a separate bank account for your expenses like rent or mortgage and utilities. All of your personal expenses should come out of your own respective accounts. 


Make Contracts


No matter how much you feel that you can trust a person, itís always good to put everything in writing. This way, if there are any disputes in the future, youíll always have a contract that you can refer back to. Itís also important to have these documents for things like security deposits or down payments. If the relationship ends at any point, itís important for the person who paid for certain things to get their money back.     


Planning and tracking your finances when you move in with a significant other is important. It will certainly make your life easier if you have these conversations beforehand.