8 Ways To Save Up For Your Down Payment

saving up for your down payment

In recent years, more and more average income earners are unable to afford buying their own property.

What has contributed to this situation?

Some say it’s because the banks are too stringent with lending, others would argue it’s because of the rising housing cost, there are also some who say that we are just simply not earning enough.

Turning the questions back at oneself, could the reason also be this – The average income earner do not have enough savings for a down payment to begin with?

Here are eight ways you can start saving up for your down payment!

1. Delayed gratification

We’re all guilty of this, the need for instant gratification.

Does this sound familiar?

Going shopping and suddenly seeing something you really want, its so difficult to resist.

Some of us would succumb to using our credit cards just to get our hands on it immediately.

immediate gratification

Why not pause and hold on to that thought of buying that new iPhone/MacBook Pro (or whatever it may be).

Keep asking yourself, do I need this or do I want this?

Can I afford it?

List down at least 3 reasons to justify your purchase. If it’s to make an impression, think again.

Try this: wait for 3 months and see if you still decide to continue with that purchase.

2. Set a standing instruction

Set aside at least 7% of your salary (a fixed amount every month) as savings before spending.

Set a standing instruction into a separate savings account, unit trust fund or whichever investment vehicle you are comfortable with.

Even on days you forget to save, the bank does it for you automatically.

Check the account after 1 year, you’ll be amazed at how much you’ve managed to put aside!


3. Monetize all your skills & hobbies

Do you have extra skills or hobbies?

Photography? Coding skills? Good at a language? Dancing?

freelance writer

Earn extra cash by doing freelance in your free time!

Sell your photos as stock photos, get paid each time it gets downloaded.

Get on fiverr.com or other freelancing sites to offer your web development services, translation services etc.

If you’re a great dancer, how about teaching at a dance studio part time?

Put these skills and hobbies to use and get paid for them!

No skills? Get behind the wheel!

Drive Uber/Grab, pay down your debts faster and earn extra cash!

Driving uber or grab

4. Set a timer for your air conditioner

You and I know how much we LOVE our air conditioner.

We simply cannot live without it.

Try setting a timer to your air conditioner, so that it is only on for a couple of hours when you’re about to enter sleep, and have it automatically off itself.

You will be amazed at how much money you can save on your electric bills!

Here’s an article by cilisos.my, Guess How Much Your Aircond Contribute To Your Electric Bill?

5. Review your monthly expenses

These include your insurance premium, mobile phone data plan, UNIFI, dietary supplements, facial treatment, massage, manicure & pedicure, gym, petrol etc. Things you regularly spend on every month.

Some expenses are necessary, however they can also be reviewed and tweaked once in a while so that your spending is optimized.

You may not even realize that you may be over paying for some things you under utilize.

Are there cheaper or more cost effective alternatives?

Start reviewing them one by one and you may be able to point out where you can cut back on.

Are you one who increase your expenses on weekly/monthly indulgences once you get a raise?

Is your lifestyle undergoing an inflation?

What is “lifestyle inflation”?

Nadia Khan from comparehero.my described what “lifestyle inflation” is and why it’s causing you to struggle.

She also challenged readers to think in the opposite, when you earn more, you save more instead of spending more.

Because logically speaking, if you spend more, you will likely be in greater debt or financial uncertainty than if you were to save more money.

6. Liquidate all your white elephants

Liquidate everything you no longer use in your home such as electronic appliances, furniture etc.

You will be surprised how much money you can get back by getting rid of white elephants in your home.

You can use listing apps such as Carousell to list your items for sale.

By doing so, you get to kill two birds with one stone- get back some money and clear up the  clutter in your home.

Trust me, this is quite therapeutic!

7. File your taxes wisely, accurately and on time

Do you know what are some of the things you can get tax relief?

Some examples are life insurance, books, sports equipment.

It changes every year after the Prime Minister announces the annual budget.

Pay close attention to tax reliefs, what can be tax deducted and file them accurately.

Remember to keep your receipts for at least 7 years.

8. Eat home cooked food

Not only is eating home cooked food healthier, it also saves you money!

Cook a little extra during dinner and pack the remaining for lunch the next day!

Let’s say a home cooked meal (with moderate, ordinary, non-premium ingredients) cost about RM 4-5, and a meal outside cost RM 8-10.

You would save ~RM 5 per meal, RM 15 per day, RM 90 per week (Ok la, maybe one day you eat out), RM 360 per month, RM 4320 per year!!

Why not start being your own cook?


Q: What are some measures you have taken for yourself to ensure you increase your savings for your property down payment?

Share with us your own tips in the comment box below and share this if you agree! 

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