WASHINGTON – Nov. 2, 2011 – Forget the toasters and champagne flutes: More engaged couples are doing a different type of wedding registry that allows them to collect cash for a downpayment on a home, according to a recent article in The Washington Times.
Dana Ostomel, founder of Deposit a Gift in New York City, says that about 15 percent of their registries are to raise downpayment funds for a home and another 15 percent are for home-improvement funds to pay for upgrades like a new roof or furniture.
“Given that 75 percent of today’s engaged couples already live together and are older, very often they are already established with the household basics that you find on a traditional registry,” Ostomel said. “What they want is the gift of big-ticket items and longer term goals, like the gift of homeownership.”
The FHA permits gifts from a wedding to be used as a downpayment, but lenders are required to document that the funds are gifts. About 27 percent of first-time homebuyers use gift money from relatives and friends for a downpayment, according to a 2010 National Association of Realtors® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers survey.