Vet bills, overseas jaunts, creative projects. It seems everyone and their dog is crowdfunding for something these days.
But what about getting complete strangers to help buy your first home?
That’s exactly what would-be first-time buyers could be doing with the launch of Gifted Deposit – a new site dedicated to helping people get their feet on the property ladder.
Hopeful homeowners will pitch for funding towards a deposit for their first home and rely on family, friends and strangers to hand over their cash.
The fundraisers must sign a document that states they will use the money for a mortgage deposit.
Will strangers dig into their pockets?
Would-be homebuyers will be able to post a video explaining why they need a helping hand and, while there will be no financial returns for investors, small rewards may be offered to those willing to part with their money. Think: an invite to the housewarming or some baking.
The creators say the funding aspect of the site won’t be solely aimed at “strangers” but rather at first-time buyers’ network of family, friends, distant relatives and colleagues.
House-hunters could set up a campaign to encourage wedding guests to forgo the gifts of dodgy kitchenware and ornaments (which, let’s be honest, are shoved straight to the back of the cupboard after the honeymoon) and instead make a donation to their first-home fund.
Lots of couples are already doing this with “wishing wells” at weddings.
The crowdfunding conundrum…
Personally, crowdfunding makes me a little uneasy.
I loved the Abel Tasman beach campaign and think there’s definitely a place for those that fundraise for people in tragic circumstances. But when it’s for something that a lot of other people are just quietly plugging away at on their own, it irks me a bit.
My partner and I are currently saving for our first home. Watching house prices go up and up is pretty demoralising but it’s something we’re just sucking up and getting on with.
We’re lucky that my parents are letting us stay with them while we save but we’re making sacrifices in lots of other ways to pinch the pennies.
And we’re content with buying a do-up in a suburb a fair drive from the city to get on the ladder.
This new site could be a great way for first-time homeowners to get a boost to their savings but I think we’d still prefer to do it the old-fashioned way.
What do you think of the idea of crowdfunding for your first home? Did you find it a struggle to get on the property ladder or are you still not quite on that first rung?
Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page.