Saving For The Downpayment – Vancouver Condos 101

Saving For The Downpayment – Vancouver Condos 101
Getting your foot in the door and buying your first 1 bedroom condo in Vancouver is not easy. The first hurdle is saving the 5 or 10% for the downpayment. In this blog I’m going to look at some of the ways I’m seeing first time buyers save to get that downpayment put together. Would love to get some feedback from my viewers on this topic as well.

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14 thoughts on “Saving For The Downpayment – Vancouver Condos 101”

  1. I think another obvious method to save is through meals. Prepare your own meals and keep eating-out to a minimum. I occasionally go out to eat and socialize but I'd never go out to eat by myself. If it's too time consuming to make meals everyday, I'd suggest bulk cooking meals that can generate 4-6 boxed meals at a time. For me, this technique not only saves me money, it also allows me to choose more nutrient dense and lean ingredients to cook a healthier meal. Savings obvious vary from person to person depending on how much they decide to go out to eat with friends.

  2. Some great comments here! Thanks to everyone who has posted so far. You have all reaffirmed what i think some people seem to forget and that's people are still making things happen! & getting there foot into this market everyday. It's not easy and you need to make sacrficies .. but it can be done and when you do the rewards down the road will make it that much more satisfying.

    As many of you have posted below. Nobody is going to give you anything! If you want to make it happen then you need to do the things to make it happen. That what life is all about. I have found that anything worth doing in life ( Buying a home, saving for retirement, staying in shape) takes hard work and discipline. " If it is to be.. then it is up to me" Thanks for sharing your stories and ideas on how you did it. Stay focused and enjoy the ride!

  3. Automatic savings!!! It's a real life changer. Saving as if you are paying a downpayment really helped. I was putting large sums of money away biweekly with any effort on my end.

  4. Plan on parents doing nothing for you, it's not a rule that was set in stone that parents where to shell out for the kids first home, i don't even know where that idea came from. It was unheard of in my family. The idea is that people need to get better careers that pay more. Learn to value what skills you have and take it beyond what you are told you can and can't do. There are so many hidden career opportunities in Vancouver, forget about the jobs and think outside the box. If the job your working doesn't pay at least $80,000 per year, forget about it. There's not option, you have to move on. I have lived in Vancouver my entire life and had 4 careers back to back all about 5 years and all paying $90,000-$140,000. Every 5 years things changed, then i had to move on again then again. I looked for the best because i never wanted to give up my lifestyle and so anything less just was not an option. The opportunities came about and I never listened to anyone that said i couldn't do that because i wasn't educated in it, or didn't go to college ect. Just fake it till you make it, as well being self employed is they way to go.

  5. I bought my yaletown condo 3 years ago when I was 28. Fortunately enough I did a few internships in the IT sector during my university days and was able to save up a bit of money and I was able to land a decently paid job after graduation in Vancouver. I was able to save ~40 to 50% of what I make every month thanks to being able to live with my parents place. I'd still dine out and have fun with friends, but would avoid any crazy trips that would break the bank. Everytime I get a raise, I would just bank that increase as if I didn't have the raise to begin with.

    I was never a big spender, I only buy 99% of the things I wanted when I see them on sale as a reasonable price. I still remember I was EXTREMELY tempted like many others to get a luxury car after I had about 50-60K savings one year after I got my full time job. I even scheduled with the salesman to purchase that car the next day but good thing I gave it a really deep thought about it the evening before and called it off the next morning. It was the best decision I've made at the time (the best decision was to buy the condo at yaletown) and life would have been a lot different today if I still have that crazily expensive car that depreciates every year with crazy amount of maintenance + insurance + premium fuel costs.

    My 2 cents to younger folks (not that I am that much older or anything) is to don't get caught up into envying your friends or people around you who has luxury cars, using luxury goods or dining out at fancy restaurants every weekends because you want to blend in and see it as a social status. 5, 10 years or 20 years down the road, no one will remember what car or brand name goods you have now. You need need make the sacrifices now if you want to live a more comfortable life in the future. Just remember nothing will be handed to you, no government is gonna do enough the intervene to cause a real estate crash just so that you can get a house for 50% off. Even if it does, you will still need to prep yourself with the downpayment so you can jump into the market.

  6. As you suggested I stayed with my parents and drove a beat up 10 yr old car from my sister.  Did that for the first 5 years after graduating from university. 

    My first purchase was a condo, and lived in there for 8yrs.  After 8yrs I sold the condo, since strata didn't allow rentals.  I then bought a detached house in Surrey with a basement suite.  I live in the basement and have tenants upstairs.  People thought I was nuts for living in the basement.  I was single when I purchased the house and so living in a 1000sqft basement is not that bad.  When I'm no longer single I'll have a nice home and some money saved up to reno upstairs.  It's not a bad sacrifice imo.  As you mentioned in your videos its about being creative and making sacrifices.

  7. My wife and I were living in our Surrey townhouse, but we wanted to buy something closer to family in Burnaby. Decided the best move long term would be to keep the Surrey townhouse and rent it out. So we moved into my in-laws basement for 1.5yrs, grinded every day at our jobs and saved up 20% down for a preconstruction townhouse in Burnaby. The fact that it's preconstruction is a huge bonus. Gives us an additional year to save up another 10-15% so we won't be going in with a massive mortgage.

  8. I saved a percentage of my paycheck every month. It really does add up with consistency and patience. Took me 3 years to save for a 20% down payment. I rent and have a car and go on trips every year. Also I always pack my lunch which saves me, although I do still go out with friends to eat out on the weekends. So you don't have to give up everything. But need some consistent habits like saving every month. Or making your own coffee. Or packing your lunch. Simple consistent habits.

  9. Here is what i think i a big issue most people dont realize. Dont waste food! I know its obvious but how many times do you throw out food every week? Generally for myself i spend about $500 a month on food ($6000) a year. Keeping waste to a minimal is great as you wouldnt need to out as often to get more food and saves quite a nice amount of money.

  10. I was fortunate to purchase my first Vancouver condo 5 years ago without financial help from anyone. I was able to do this before I turned 30. Reflecting back to my accomplishment, I had to make sacrifices which aligns to what you mentioned in your video. Selling my Audi and making my coffee at home were just some of choices I had to make in order steer my funding towards the down payment. Staying discipline to a minimalist lifestyle had increased my net worth.

    I am now living in a home with increased value and equity, driving a basic reliable car.
    This concept of living will continue as our goal is to purchase a second home.

    The valuable and realistic tips shared in this video is spot on and I hope local Vancouverites will take note because it can be done. Purchasing as a couple will also increase your purchasing power. Have a clear view of your values and stay focused.

    You Sir – Existing and potential clients are lucky to have you as their realtor and advisor. You had respectfully earned my subscription and I look forward in seeing more of your videos. Keep up the excellent work.

  11. Hi Owen,

    Great video! I'm in Victoria myself, but I've been saving for the last 3 years and trying to hit that 20% down mark for a condo. I picked up a part-time job (on top of my 9-5) which has added about 400 extra a month, limit the amount of times I eat out (1-2 times/month), walk to work, live under my means (only buy things when needed), and have stayed in an older building (70's wood frame) where the rent is reasonable.

  12. At the end of 2012 (could have even been Jan. 2013) I put my university degree on hold (at the time I thought it would be for good) and moved to Calgary. Stayed at someone's basement for 2 weeks and in those 2 weeks I took a couple of safety tickets (first aid etc…). I also took a one week introductory course in a trade I was interested in to basically have something on my resume. I wanted to get signed up as an apprentice, but I had nothing to show as far as trades related skills were concerned. So that course was my way of saying I'm serious. I ended up getting a job in Edmonton for 18 bucks an hr. In 4 months they increased it to 27. I also got another 4 bucks on top for doing night shift. Finally I moved to fort mac and got a camp job which meant no rent. My wage was also increased to 40 an hour (2.5 years had passed by then). By year 3 I had 60000 saved up. I bought a condo in Nov. 2015 in Downtown.

    What I did was a bit haphazard and it's not for everyone. You can stay in BC and find a trade and kind of find a way to get into the fort St John market so you don't even have to leave the province. Basically find a way to not pay rent and work. That's key. Rent is at least a thousand anywhere you go. 12k a year saved.

  13. Just penny pinching really. With everything! We don't eat out unless it's someone's birthday. Checking every recurring expense and cutting out a lot of it (cable was not missed). We realize some of the spending was just due to us not really giving things much thought. Turns out we can really live without a lot of the stuff we have and actually have a better life. Craigslist some things in the storage while donating some and in the end decluttering all the junk which would be helpful before we move in to the new place. It seemed like small things, but we ended up paying off all our debt and since the car is paid off, we were really able to build our savings and get a good rate for our mortgage.

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