Thinking About Using Your 401(k) To Buy a Home?

Are you dreaming of buying your home and wondering how to save for a down payment? You’re not alone. Some people consider tapping into their 401(k) savings to make it happen. But before you decide to dip into your retirement to buy a home in Chicago, consider this guide for all possible alternatives and talk with a financial expert.

Here’s why.

The Numbers May Make It Tempting

The data shows many Americans have saved a considerable amount for retirement (see chart below):

Average 401K Balance By Age - KM Realty, Chicago

It can be tempting when you have a lot of money saved up in your 401(k) and you see your dream home on the horizon. But remember, dipping into your retirement savings for a home could cost you a penalty and affect your finances later on. That’s why exploring all your options is important when saving for a down payment and buying a home. As Experian says:

“It’s possible to use funds from your 401(k) to buy a house, but whether you should depends on several factors, including taxes and penalties, how much you’ve already saved and your unique financial circumstances.”

Alternative Ways To Buy a Home

Using your 401(k) is one way to finance a home, but it’s not the only option. Before you decide, consider a couple of other methods courtesy of Experian:

  • FHA Loan: FHA loans allow qualified buyers to put down as little as 3.5% of the home’s price, depending on their credit scores.
  • Down Payment Assistance Programs: Many national and local programs can help first-time and repeat homebuyers create the necessary down payment.

Above All Else, Have a Plan

Regardless of your route to purchase a home, talk with a financial expert before you do anything. Working with a team of experts to develop a concrete plan before starting your journey to homeownership is the key to success. Kelly Palmer, Founder of The Wealthy Parentsays:

“I have seen parents pausing contributions to their retirement plans in favor of affording a larger home often with the hope they can refinance in the future… As long as there is a tangible plan in place to get back to saving for their retirement goals, I encourage families to consider all their options.

Bottom Line

If you’re still considering using your 401(k)-retirement savings for a home down payment, consider all your options and work with a financial professional before making any decisions.

Reach out to real estate experts at KM Realty Group LLC, Chicago, IL, to discuss this in more detail.