Millennials – those in the 19-35 age range – have been slow to enter the home buying market.

Underemployment, student loan debts, tight credit and the difficulty of saving for a down payment are some of the reasons.

But with the giving season upon us, now could be a terrific time to let parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles know that you have created a down payment account and would appreciate a small gift deposited to it. In future years, you can host relatives in your home during the holiday season.

Here are four other ways to gradually put together a down payment.

  1. Start saving. Even if you can only afford to put $50 a week into an account.
  2. Are you having a birthday? Ask parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles to contribute to your down payment account.
  3. Is your clutter out of control? Do you have “stuff ” from years long past? Get together with friends, family or neighbours and have a sale. Proceeds to your down payment account.
  4. Be your own chef or barista. Cut down on meals and coffees out. You’ll be surprised at how quickly the savings add up.

It may take a few years, but your savings will add up and soon you’ll have a down payment.