I bought my first house at 23 with a low income and an average credit score – how you can too


A SUPER saver has revealed how she bought her first home at the age of 23 with a low income and an average credit score.

Jazmin Bautista posted a video on YouTube explaining how she saved money and prepared to buy the property last year.


Jazmin Bautista bought her first house at 23

However, the buyer said that before you go house hunting, you should be prepared to provide information on these four things:

  • Your credit score
  • tax returns
  • bank statement
  • Cash reserves

1. Credit score

Credit scores are important because banks will lend you money and need to have proof that you are reliable.

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Jazmin said her credit score was between 700 and 720 – which isn’t very high – due to some mistakes she made with her first credit card when she was 18.

However, she wanted to improve her credit score as it is imperative when buying a property and was aiming for 740.

2. Tax declarations

Jazmin said she was asked for two years of tax returns when she applied for her mortgage.

Banks do this as another way to prove you have the funds to pay off your potential mortgage.

One of the ways banks get paid is based on the mortgages they lend.

If someone is unable to pay, then the bank will have to cover the costs.

So, for the bank to feel comfortable offering you the mortgage, they need to be sure that you have a stable income.

3. Bank statement

The first-time buyer has provided two months of bank statements, but some banks require up to six months depending on the personal situation of each.

Providing these documents is another way to prove that you are reliable, stable, and not engaging in any illegal activity.

4. Cash reserves

Along with her down payment and closing costs, she managed to save $12,000, which made it much easier for her to get a mortgage.

She recommends having a nice amount of spare change, as this will give lenders confidence that you have at least a few months’ worth of money saved for your monthly payment.

Down payment assistance

Jazmin showed how to calculate the closing costs of buying a home via the Bank of America website.

For example, if you were buying a house for $250,000 with a 30-year loan at a fixed rate of 5%, you would need to have saved at least $12,500 for a down payment.

This means that your potential loan amount will be $237,500.

She was able to get her house with a 3.5% down payment because she was a college graduate and didn’t have to have a job that paid more than minimum wage.

We’ve rounded up down payment assistance programs for first-time home buyers in our guide.

How to start saving

After deciding she wanted to buy a house, Jazmine knew going home was the best way for her to save money on rent, bills and food.

“You have to financially sacrifice things that most people won’t do,” Jazmine said.

If that’s not feasible for you, there are other ways to make sacrifices that will add up.

For example, setting a budget to pay off your debt is one of the best ways to prioritize your savings.

“I was living paycheck to paycheck. I always thought I didn’t have enough money to save, but the reality was that I was using my money to go out and eat, to go to m buying new clothes, going out and watching movies,” Jazmine said.

Moreover, it can be useful to automate your savings.

This means putting your money in a savings account.

Often you are not able to withdraw for three to five working days, which could motivate you to invest more money.

The first-time buyer also said those looking to buy should find other sources of income.

This could include side hustle or part-time jobs.

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