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Would You Ask Your Family For Down Payment Help?

Many young couples are betting that it's an ideal time to buy their first homes because there's better value on the real estate market, but barriers from banks' stricter requirements have caused them to turn to another lending source. These want-to-be homeowners, many who never asked for financial assistance in their adult lives, are turning to family members for help with down payments and related buying expenses like closing costs and co-op fees. Arguing that the properties will likely appreciate, some of these relatives are obliging with hope of participating in the eventual gain.


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chub0t chub0t 8 years
The last time I didn't have cash on me, they gathered the cash from everyone else at the table and paid the remainder bill on my plastic. We had a special kind of waitress that accidentally ran my card three times (once for each person) for the entire amount of the bill (275$). Thankfully, I caught it the next morning and the owner reversed all charges and gave me my meal for free. Don't want to take the risk again though, cash always!
jnj213 jnj213 8 years
My parents helped my brother buy my grandmother's house. When I broached how it would still seem like a good time to buy a home in a few years, I was informed my parents always planned on helping me as they did my brother. Lower rates, they have amazing credit, it's going to help me a lot I hope. I think this would have happened even if I was single.
SugarDaisy SugarDaisy 8 years
Living the NY metro area, it would take a ridiculously long time to save up for the down payment. Sadly, rent in this area is more expensive than some people's mortgage payments in most parts of the country. Having said that, I would like to attempt to save up on my own, but would not turn down my parents if they wanted to help out. Maybe I need to move out of this area :P
HeidiMD HeidiMD 8 years
Something about that just seems wrong to me. If something drastic were to happen and we REALLY needed help, my dad wouldn't hesitate to do whatever he could, but I'm a little too old to ask Daddy to please-pretty-please buy me and my almost-husband a home. We bought it ourselves, thanks.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
Uh, considering we were in better financial shape than either set of parents when we bought our house, we didn't ask for any money from them. We're responsible with our money and we did save for a good 2 years to get enough for a 20% down payment on a house we could afford. Sure, it's not exactly a dream house, but it's a starter home that we can afford and when we build enough equity in it, we'll sell it and use that money as a down payment on our real dream house.
Deidre Deidre 8 years
No; I'm not going to be asking. My folks are giving me a wedding so my fiance and I can focus all our money on buying our own place when the time is right. That's a really wonderful gift from them, and I'm grateful. We're working hard to save what we can and hopefully take advantage of the current housing market!
heartbreakerx62x heartbreakerx62x 8 years
I wish I could ask my mom, but that would never happen in a million years because she doesn't have the money. But, even if she did, I don't think I would ever ask. However, if my parents were very wealthy and gave it to me, I wouldn't say no!
gemsera gemsera 8 years
We didnt ask, but both our parents offered. However they are in a position to offer, and they both knew we would do it on our own with or without their help so I think they just wanted to share their love.
gooniette gooniette 8 years
I've borrowed money twice. The first condo I bought, I asked my dad to pay off my car so I could refinance the payment with him to something more manageable. That helped me to qualify for the mortgage. I paid him back as soon as I could though. The second time (the house we just bought a couple of weeks ago), I had all the money saved up for a down payment and three weeks before closing, the money I had sitting in a money market froze because of a bank run! I had to borrow money from my company and then the rest from my parents so we could close on the house. I'm paying them back as soon as the money becomes unfrozen though. What a nightmare!
lawchick lawchick 8 years
congrats Renee!!
Renees3 Renees3 8 years
We're buying a houseright now (closing next week) and while my parents have helped up (let me borrow $500 to cover something and helping us paint) they don't have the money to help us with a down payment. But we're going with an FHA loan so we only have to put down 3% which we had. Also, I just want to say that because we found the perfect house and a better than perfect price, if we wouldn't really needed the money, we couldn't figured it out with our families. Sometimes things come along that are hard to pass up, like this house!
psterling psterling 8 years
My mother bought my husband I our house, no strings attached. It was very generous of her and I never would have asked but it was a wedding present to us and we're so grateful.
deanna024 deanna024 8 years
Angela123, I agree: a couple who wants to be grown-up and independent should not be relying on mom/dad for support! If you can't afford a house, save! It will be the first of many challenges you may face as a couple, but you have to learn that mom/dad will not be there for you forever for every thing you need. I wonder where it comes from, the mindset that owning a home in the U.S. is a right, not a privilege? It sure isn't that way in other countries. And it sure wasn't that way in other times: up until the 1950's/1960s, owning a home was out of reach for most Americans. There weren't mortgages -- you pretty much had to buy the whole thing at once.
supercoolnat supercoolnat 8 years
No way. I'm an adult now, and it's my responsibility to buy my own things. Why would I ask them for tens of thousands of dollars? That's their own money. If I'm going to own my own place, I'm going to pay for it with my own money. And like others have said, things can get ugly when you mix family and money.
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 8 years
My parents were the ones that prodded me to buy a house in the first place. In my case, they not only put the down payment on it but are also on the title. (There was no way I could do it on my own back then...I was only 22 and definitely didn't qualify for the loan.) So the deal was that I paid the mortgage, property taxes and all of the utilites (and lived there with roommates) and they would take the tax write off for 10 years. So...14 years later I can say that buying my house with my parents was the best thing I have ever done. My house is worth 3 times what we paid for it and even though they took the write off in exchange for the down payment, I'm still going to give them the money back when I sell.
SDTransplant SDTransplant 8 years
My b/f and I were going to buy a condo earlier this year but the deal fell through. We had come up with the money ourselves and our parents are not in any position to help us out with a down payment. I wouldn't feel comfortable asking my own parents, or his for that matter, for help anyway because they've got their own money problems to deal with. And as for relatives, well, some of mine are pretty well off all things considered, but I definitely wouldn't ask them for money! I've seen my mom lent money to relatives (and seen her borrow from them as well) and it just gets messy, particularly when people do not pay you back.
Angela123 Angela123 8 years
EXACTLY, syako!! You said just what I was trying to say, only better than I said it ;)
Angela123 Angela123 8 years
No way. My family would do it, if they had the money, but I'd never ask, ESPECIALLY, like bigestivediscuit said, if I were asking as part of a couple!! I don't think anyone has any business buying a house if they aren't in a position to pay for it. Common sense, you know? My boyfriend and I are saving for a house now, and don't plan on buying one until we can afford it on our own. In my opinion, that's kind of the whole point of buying a house and going out ON YOUR OWN. My parents have done more than enough for me :)
syako syako 8 years
No. My husband and I are young, we live within our means, we work hard, spend a little, save a lot, and when we're ready to purchase a home, we will pay the down payment and the subsequent mortgage all by ourselves. We would respectfully decline if either of our family's offered assistance.
amycullen2 amycullen2 8 years
I couldn't ask for help even though I could have used it to make things a lot easier. My parents are poor enough as it is, can't really ask them for something they don't have.
bellaressa bellaressa 8 years
Never, even if they had it. That is why I am waiting now - just stacking my money.
gabiushka gabiushka 8 years
We would not do that, that would be asking for trouble. That is why we are saving like maniacs.
lawchick lawchick 8 years
correction -- she offered to GIVE me $5000, not as a loan.
sonya-ina sonya-ina 8 years
I wouldn't ask (and I didn't because when my husband and I bought a house we had enough money saved, thanks goodness), but if we really needed it I know my parents would offer, and they wouldn't expect us to pay them back. That's just how my parents are, and I am hoping one day my husband and I can help our kids like my parents have helped my sister and I :]
lawchick lawchick 8 years
My mom offered to loan me $5000 towards my down payment, then backed out about a week before closing. No real reason was given. That was three years ago amnd I'm not mad about it anymore (I managed to buy the house anyway) -- but I wouldn't accept an offer from her again. It hasn't burned me on the idea of borrowing/taking money from (other) family for things like this, though.
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