Here's how many years you'd have to skip avocado toast to afford buying a home
Trying to find the extra cabbage to buy a home and aren't sure where you'll get it? At least one millionaire claims the answer lies in your avocado toast.
Australian millionaire Tim Gurner recently suggested that if young first-time homebuyers curbed their avocado toast addiction they could save enough money to buy a home, as Time reports. "When I was trying to buy my first home, I wasn't buying smashed avocado for [AU]$19 and four coffees at [AU]$4 each," Gurner told the Australian version of 60 Minutes. Instead, he says, he pushed himself and worked hard until he could afford his first home.
Unsurprisingly, much internet roasting has ensued.
As Mic has pointed out before, shaming millennials about food or drink purchases is rarely helpful. Indeed, eliminating your avocado consumption won't immediately provide the all-important down payment. Even if you ate avocado toast every single day, using the median U.S. home value price of $196,500 via Zillow, it would still take about 13 years of avoiding that daily indulgence to save enough for a mere 20% down payment.
How so? With the price of avocado toast at around $8 per serving, Time points out you'd have to forgo over 4,900 servings to add up to that 20% ($39,300) and score the average priced home.
What if you live in a popular urban setting such as San Francisco or New York City? Your avocado toast austerity would more than double to missing out on 10,000 to 21,000 servings — aka skipping daily avocado toast for 27-57 years.
Now, these figures assume you're eating avocado toast every day, which seems excessive. But even if you committed to simply eating out less, you would still struggle to afford a 20% down payment, the New York Times pointed out. Assuming the average American aged 25 to 34 ate out less — about $300 less per year, mimicking Baby Boomers' budgets — it would still take more than a century for you to afford a down payment on a median home.
Now, prospective homebuyers have some hope — just not in avocado form: Look for low to no down payment program options. Programs like VA loans, designed to assist active duty and honorably discharged military members or USDA loans, can potentially help you secure a 0% down payment. Teachers, firefighters, cops and EMTs may also be eligible for a program offering huge discounts on homes.
Buyers also have the option to check out both FHA and conventional loans, and both options may provide low down payment options. If your bank offers a conventional loan with a low down payment, inquire about private mortgage insurance. Some low-down-payment conventional loans may allow you to waive the PMI requirement — so ask first.
You'll still need to have money saved up of course; here are a few moves you can make to save $500 this month. Never hurts to get started!
And if you can already afford a home? You can get free avocado toast! One crafty real estate agent is offering 12 months of free avocado toast at your favorite cafe for buying a AU$595,000 condo in Brisbane, Australia. That's a little more than $440,000 in U.S. dollars.
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