5 ways to save for a down payment

You've found the perfect house and you're ready to take the leap, but there's one thing standing in your way: a down payment. Find out how to save for a down payment using these simple tips.

1. Pay off credit card debt. When you begin the hunt for a new house, start paying off as much of your credit card debt as possible. Carrying a balance means accumulating interest charges that can eat away at your funds.

2. Find a special program for first-time homebuyers. There are tons of programs out there for first-time homebuyers or anyone struggling to save for a down payment. You might be eligible for aid from Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored offices that buy mortgages and package them as investments. There are also nonprofits and community groups that offer assistance to those facing financial hardships.

3. Tap into your IRA. The IRS allows you to use up to $10,000 in IRA funds for a down payment if you've never owned a house. If you're married and your spouse has also never owned a home before, they are also eligible to pull from their IRA. That's $20,000 right there.

4. Ask for a loan from family. Instead of having your parents pay for a wedding, ask them to assist with your down payment. You could also ask other family members or friends for a personal loan that you will pay back over time.

5. Get a second job. If your employer is unable to give you a raise, consider getting a second job temporarily on nights and weekends. Driving for Lyft or Uber is an easy way to make money, especially since you can create your own hours.

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