Dream Wedding OR First Home Down Payment?

posted 5 months ago in Money
  • poll: Would you exchange your dream wedding for a larger first home down payment gift?
    I’d rather have my dream wedding and take the original down payment gift. : (12 votes)
    10 %
    I’d rather have a larger down payment for my first home and seriously downsize my wedding plans. : (77 votes)
    63 %
    I’d rather just go to the courthouse and receive all the allocated funds for the down payment. : (29 votes)
    24 %
    Other : (4 votes)
    3 %
  • Post # 46
    871 posts
    Busy bee

    laureng1 :  It’s absolutely great if you’ve overcome past obstacles to get where you are now, seriously. And I’m glad you had a mentor- perhaps your own growth and success can even allow you to be a mentor to someone else down the road….  

    But I would still be much more cautious in home buying. Absolutely home ownership is an understandable goal (and I know what it’s like to rent and dream of home ownership when I was younger). But it seems your life has been a bit of a whirlwind recently- in a good way. You say you only met your fiance last spring- but also attended a home ownership conference last year together. You’ve moved across the country, you’ve started new jobs. This all sounds exciting, but it also sounds like an awful lot of change already.

    TBH in your position, I would definitely go with your plan to ‘aggressively save’ – for emergency funds and home ownership related costs. I would tuck your mom’s gift into an account toward a down payment (I’m Canadian and sounds like you are in the U.S., so I’m not certain the equivalent here, but we have Registered Retirement Savings Plans- contributions to this savings plan can also be used as a Home Buyer’s Plan, up to 25k, as well as give you a great break at tax time. Perhaps you could check with your own bank and see if there is something similar you could set up). But I would hesitate on purchasing a home right away, 3.5% is the barest minimum you can qualify for an FHA with and you’re also required, in addition to good credit scores which you say you have, to prove stable income which often requires you to not only be gainfully employed but to have been at your job for a minimum requirement period which your fiance and yourself wouldn’t have yet if you’ve just relocated for new jobs. And the smaller your downpayment, the higher your monthly mortgage and this is such an important factor because anything from pregnancy to job loss to illness can affect yours and your fiance’s incomes, even if you’re both hardworking people wanting to make this work. 

    So my most updated advice would be to focus on enjoying your upcoming wedding first, with your current plan for the courthouse and restaurant dinner (which sounds not just fine, but actually lovely), meet with your bank representative and decide the most beneficial account to put your mom’s $10k in as the beginning of your downpayment/ home ownership fund, then take another year or so settling into your new location, your new jobs, your time together as newlyweds, while keeping your eye on your goal of home ownership and saving toward it. When it’s time to look for your first home together, this will also give you the added benefit of having a year or more to become familiar with your area first and have a better idea where/ what you want. 

    Post # 47
    2473 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: May 2017

    Down payment 100% of the time. I don’t understand “dream wedding” notions. It’s  a bunch of expensive decorations with people you probably don’t see regularly and usually nothing goes exactly as planned. I just attended my best friend’s wedding of around $20k and the bridal shower and bachelorette were more fun than the actual wedding. 

    Post # 48
    2473 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: May 2017

    crustyoldbee :  I have the same sentiment.  I’m 27 husband 35 and we bought our home when I was 25 turning 26 and still getting established in my career. That’s odd at your ages you have nothing saved and are depending so heavily on your parents.  I’m not trying to be judgmental but it kinda takes in consideration what your priorities might be. Still wanting a dream wedding instead of more self-established financial stability. 


    **did not read your other updates before repsonding. Sorry bee. Your update made it more clear.**

    Post # 49
    536 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2018

    laureng1 :  We chose to have our dream wedding and then used the money we received as wedding gifts towards our downpayment on our home. I’m aware this isn’t common everywhere, but where I live wedding guests give the amount of money that would “cover their plate” as a gift so we received $100+ per guest plus extra from grandparents and really close family. We both really wanted a wedding, I know we would have regretted just eloping.

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