09/17/2020

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SoFi Blog

Tips and news—
for your financial moves.

4 Ways To Save Up for a Down Payment (Without Giving Up Your Avocado Toast)

A wealthy real estate mogul recently told millennials to stop buying avocado toast if they ever want to buy a house, and the internet went berserk. The advice was poorly received, because many felt that it was out of touch with the current financial environment. For one, the millennial generation has only ever known income stagnation, wages that haven’t kept up with inflation, and skyrocketing college and real estate prices. Two, the assertion that we can’t stop shelling out for fancy breakfast foods buys into the shallow narrative that millennials don’t know the meaning of hard work or the value of a dollar.

While I largely side with the outraged denizens of the interwebs, I’ll play devil’s advocate here: Clearly, Avocado Man was hoping to make a point about frivolous spending, but he veers off track when making the assumption that this is a trademark of the millennial generation. Current times have seen people of all ages spend more on “stuff” than ever before.

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The (Truly) Ultimate Guide to Buying a House in the San Francisco Bay Area

As anyone who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area will tell you, it is truly a place like no other. The tech industry beckons with its surfeit of good paying jobs, the restaurant scene rivals that of any world capital, oh—and where else can you ski in the mountains one weekend, and then kayak with sea otters the next?

So while it’s not hard to understand why so many people are clamoring to buy a home in the Bay Area, those incredible perks are offset by one major drawback—a sky-high real estate market.

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How to Use Tech to Buy a House (and Take Your Hunt to the Next Level)

We use tech for just about everything these days. If the need exists, as they say, “there’s an app for that”—whether it’s food delivery, laundry service, or borrowing a car.

So for the complicated process that is searching for your first home, it’s no surprise that a few innovators are giving it a tech upgrade. Apps and online tools simplify the more labor-intensive parts of house hunting, from learning real estate lingo and weighing mortgage options to finding new listings and investigating neighborhoods.

Here’s a tour of some of the most useful house-hunting websites and real estate apps to use on the path to buying your dream home.

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How to choose a new neighborhood when home buying

How to Tell If You’ve Outgrown Your Neighborhood—and Where to Go Next

There comes a turning point in every renter’s life, where that neighborhood you loved when you moved in just doesn’t feel right anymore. It happens—sometimes the community surrounding your home changes, and isn’t quite as sweet as when you first moved in. But more often than not, as life goes on, careers advance, families grow, and finances improve, it’s less about the neighborhood transforming, and more about your own priorities shifting for what you want out of an area.

While you may have once reveled in the fact that your neighborhood boasted plenty of hotspots just outside your front door, you may now yearn for a quieter, more family-focused locale so that you can start your own. Better yet, as your career has blossomed—along with your salary—it may be time to upgrade to a larger place with more of your “wish-list” items in an area, where you’ll be surrounded by up-and-comers just like you. After all, home buying isn’t just about falling in love with a house, securing a mortgage, and making that square footage your own; it’s also about finding the perfect neighborhood that works for you today and tomorrow.

If it’s time to assess whether you’ve outgrown your neighborhood, here are the questions to ask yourself:

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New Home or Fixer Upper

SoFi Two Sides: New Home or Fixer Upper?

Two Sides is a new series of articles in which we ask SoFi members and employees to weigh in with their experiences, perspectives, and insights on topics important to our diverse community.

When house hunting, you might have trouble deciding whether you want to buy new home or invest in a fixer-upper. While a new or newer home typically requires little or no work, you’ll likely pay market price, which means ponying up more dough up front. With a fixer-upper, there’s a good chance you’ll get a deal that allows you to put less money down, but you’ll need funds on hand for immediate renovations. You’ll also need to plan ahead financially for any fixes you want to make at a gradual pace.

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