Saving for a down payment

You’ve been to Ucluelet a few times now, and you know that it’s the place that you want to call home. You and your family simply love being immersed in nature; adventuring the day away together, and we are here to say that it is absolutely possible for you to Start Living in Ukee full-time.

If making the move to the wild west coast of Vancouver Island, Canada, is on your wish list, we want to help you get that ever-important down-payment together. It will take some patience and time, but with an action plan and a burning desire to enjoy sunset walks on the beach any day of the week, you are certainly well on your way to buying a Ucluelet home.

As savings go, the beginnings often feel quite insignificant, but after some time, you will barely notice that you are saving money until – boom!- one day in the foreseeable future, you will have a pile of money in the bank that is paving the way to homeownership.

Sound good?

Great.

Here’s how to get started:

Trim Your Expenses

Unnecessary expenses have to be the first thing to go. There is no reason to sacrifice all of your creature comforts in order to save for a house, but there will be somethings that you can give up without feeling like you can’t enjoy life.

Something as simple as exchanging your cable bill for unlimited internet and a subscription to Netflix can save you hundreds, or even thousands of dollars every year.  Cable services can cost as much as $200 per month, whereas unlimited internet services cost around $60 per month. The added $10 monthly subscription fee for access to shows and movies will make your monthly expenditures $130 less per month. That’s a savings of $1,560 a year!

Cut out your gym membership and get creative with all the other ways you can stay fit for free, such as running, outdoor fitness areas at the local park, swimming in your pool, or dusting off the old free-weights. The $50 per month you will save on membership will bump up your bank balance by $600 a year.

Pack your lunch for work, and get into the habit of making your morning hot beverage at home. Skipping the morning and noontime line-ups at the local cafe will save you on average $15 per day, which adds up to a whopping $3000+ over the course of a work year. Talk about savings!

Start to put your change in a coin jar at the end of every day. The money that can accumulate with this simple habit will astound you. You will find your jar contains hundreds of dollars by the end of the year if you keep tossing your spare change aside.

Turn down the thermostat in your house by 3 degrees, and you can bet on netting a savings of $10-$20 per month on your electricity bill. This is just a small change that will help make a bigger impact on your savings account.

Curbing your spending on dinner and drinks out at restaurants can help keep your pockets padded. By taking food to-go, or even better yet, cooking meals at home, you will save thousands… yes, thousands of dollars every year. At an modest estimate of $40 per meal, if you are used to eating out twice a week, that $4,160 spent at restaurants over the course of a year.  If you choose to cook at home, you can feed yourself for much less than that, and all of those savings will get you to the coast just that much quicker.

When you do decide to indulge and go out, remember how much you want to be hiking the trails, and surfing the waves before ordering a second glass of artisanal craft beer or wine. Small savings will make all the difference in the end.

Open a savings account dedicated solely to the down-payment, and make automated payments into it. Although the interest you acrue from a simple savings account might not add up to much, the simple repetition of putting money away each paycheque, or each month, will certainly skyrocket your savings.

Don’t forget to put the money that you are saving from all your expense trimming into this account, too! Your lifestyle will barely be changed, but your bank account will soon be bursting. It’s fun watching the balance grow towards a goal that you will so enjoy… like Living in Ukee!

Once your down payment is on a roll, it’s time to start looking for a home— but before you do that, you’ll need to get a few things together. Check out the 5 Things You Should Do Before House-Hunting in Ucluelet.

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