07 Mar 2017
Talking about buying your first home was so exciting at the beginning – and romantic. Ah, it was easy to make shiny-eyed promises over a bottle of Vino. You both agreed to equally contribute to the deposit for your new house every month. Without fail.
Now it’s four months later and you realise that you have dipped into your ‘dream home fund’ a few too many times. You have suspicions about your other half too – you found them hastily stuffing receipts into the green bin just before bin day.
It’s not easy (or even remotely romantic) talking about saving plans and spending behaviours and it can seem better to avoid an argument.
However, there is a better way to ensure that both of you stay on track with your home savings plan. Read on to discover the 5 most common behaviours that can ruin your home savings plan – so you can avoid them!
1. Not having a Direct Debit to a joint savings account
Many couples don’t realise the importance of a joint savings account when saving for a new home (and this is usually to their detriment). It helps to keep each of you on your toes, as you can both see how much is being saved at all times. And crucially, this isn’t ‘your’ money, so you won’t feel as comfortable dipping into this fund as you would your personal account.
2. Not drawing up a physical budget
So you’ve talked about your savings plan with your partner, and you know how much you will save each month. There’s no need to go back to your school-days and start pencilling in figures, right? Wrong. Without drawing up a budget, things could fall by the way-side. Your budget will encourage you to include all your spending habits and to consider a contingency plan for the months you can’t save as much.
3. Begrudging the savings agreement
Remember, your savings plan is not a legally binding contract. If you have agreed to contribute more because you earn more, make sure you’re 100% willing and you won’t begrudge the arrangement down the line. If you realise that you’ve got the short end of the stick, be honest with your partner so you can come up with another solution.
4. Underestimating your credit ratings
A bad credit rating can be hard to ‘fess up to – but make sure each of you have laid your credit scores on the table early on, so there’ll be no financial skeletons ready to come out of the closet when you’re applying for your loan. Psst – you can easily check your rating online with the Irish Credit Bureau.
5. Self-imposed austerity
Despite what many people think, you can have a life while saving for a mortgage. In fact, controlling your finances too tightly at the beginning could cause more spending issues down the line, as frustration kicks in and you end up on a spending splurge (or worse, you both do!). There’s always Groupon and Pigsback for cheap meal offers!
Buying a house with your partner can be tough work – remember, we all have different perspectives and we value money in different ways. It’s about respecting your partner and being honest about everything. For more tips on how to get mortgage ready with your significant other, download the EBS ‘Guide to Buying your first home’, or if you have any questions about the process, you can book a friendly chat with a mortgage advisor.
EBS d.a.c. is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.
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