How much do I need for a down payment?


Maybe put a little bit less down to keep money saved for a rainy day. Or to do the initial upgrades to your new home without taking on more credit card debt.


Down Payment Options


One of the 1st things to establish is how much you have to put down on a new home. The more you can put down the less you are financing which allows for a lower payment. However, for 1st time homebuyers you can usually put down as little as 3% of the purchase price for a on a primary home. There are varies programs for financing in the market and the key is to identify the ones you are eligible for and the program that works best for you.


Keep in mind a good loan officer will review your application and advise you on your options and eligibility. Your Loan Officer may advise you to put a little bit less down and keep more money in reserves. Either for a rainy day or to do the initial upgrades to your new home without taking on more credit card debt. The balance is always between home much you bring to the closing table and having a manageable monthly payment.


Below are some of the standard products and the requirements for each.


Conventional Loan - A conventional loan is a type of mortgage that is not part of a specific government program, such as Federal Housing Administration (FHA), Department of Agriculture (USDA) or the Department of Veterans' Affairs (VA) loan programs.

  • Down Payment

  • Eligibility

  • What to Know

FHA - Even if you do not have kids in school, districts play a major part in home values. More desirable schools will usually yield higher price points for a similar home in a less desirable school area. Also, pay attention to the elementary, middle, and high schools in the area you are considering. My 1st home was in an area we expected to be in until middle school. This allowed us to choose the best home for 7 years before selling an moving to the another area for middle school. The point is to think about when you buy your home and also when you may want to sell it in the future.


VA - Obviously square footage, bedroom and bathroom count are important items to consider. Further it is generally less expensive and easier to remodel square footage then to try and add square footage.


Jumbo - Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines have set loan limits however they have assigned some counties with higher or High Balance loan limits. Any loan amount above these limits are called non-conforming loans. They are mostly referred to as as Jumbo loans.


Physicians Loan - Do you want to commute? How close is shopping? How long will it take you to get to regular activities? Sometimes it makes sense to drive a little further out to meet all of your needs in a home. Other times it makes sense to sacrifice a "would like" for easier access to work, restraurants, shopping, church, etc.


Other Down Payment Sources- Gifts and Grants

Additional Loan Cost- Do you want to commute? How close is shopping? How long will it take you to get to regular activities? Sometimes it makes sense to drive a little further out to meet all of your needs in a home. Other times it makes sense to sacrifice a "would like" for easier access to work, restraurants, shopping, church, etc.

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