1. Make sure you have 3-6 months of expenses in your emergency fund.
2. Pay off any debts
3. Make sure the entire amount of your payment (principle, interest, taxes, insurance, etc.) are no more than 1/3 of your take home pay.
If you have all those in place, then consider buying a house. No matter what anyone says, a house will cost you more than renting unless you're in a blighted area. Even if the monthly payments pen out, you WILL have to make your own repairs to the home and that will add up over time. The advantage to owning is that you can write off the interest portion of the loan and eventually have NO payment, which can be used for whatever you want down the road.
2 and 3 the loan company will make sure of that
#1 I kind of disagree. I bought my first house with no money down but with around $400 in my account saved. Never needed repairs because I bought a good house. Had small upgrade and repairs I did myself but I took on a 2nd job job to save money etc..
I wouldn't stop myself from buying a house with little saved. Most people put the repairs on credit anyways and just pay monthly.
I also got a roommate for about 7 months so that helped with saving about 3k.. Just make sure your roof, sewer and furnace, air conditioner is good and you will be alright
My first mortgage was about $750-$800 a month
Edited by Superb - 11/9/14 at 10:54pm