The Bird's Nest

How Much Money Do You Need To Buy A House?

Homeowner Education

It can often be misleading how much money is needed to buy a home. Figuring out how much money you need to buy a house also entails more than the seller’s listing price. There are more costs involved than just the down payment, and this can come as a surprise to many new homeowners.  

The ideal amount for a down payment depends on various factors, including your current finances and how much a lender is willing to contribute based on your credit score. Being able to make a larger down payment is helpful when it comes to paying less on your mortgage each month, but there is a balance, and you do not want to put down too much and find yourself “house poor” without the means to live and pay off other expenses. 

How much money do you need to buy a house?

You have worked so hard to get to this point and gather the necessary funds for the down payment, but most that is not the end of it, and it will likely require many more unforeseen costs to finish the deal. Here is a breakdown of costs to consider:  

Down Payments

Most people would advise making a down payment of at least 20%. It usually looks better to lenders when they see clients willing to put down more money up front, and it will increase your chances of being approved for better mortgage rates. A 20% down payment also helps you avoid Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which can add to your monthly running costs. However, there are a few different types of mortgage loan options that prospective home buyers can leverage so as to not require a 20% downpayment on a home. Two of these include: FHA loans and conventional loans. First-time homeowner loans (FHA loans) are insured by the Federal Housing Administration and require a minimum down payment of 3.5% for those with a 580 credit score or higher. Of course, there are exceptions to this depending on the size of your downpayment. Conventional loans, on the other hand, typically require a 620 credit score or higher with a 3-5% downpayment on the price of the home. All of your options should be explained to you by your mortgage lender once you know what you qualify.   

Closing Costs

Closing costs are what tend to surprise new homeowners, which is why you should always estimate these when wondering how much money you need to buy a house. These are fees you will have to pay to lenders and other third parties to officially close a deal on a home, such as an appraisal fee, application fee, origination fee, credit report fee, other paperwork fees, insurance, and a home inspection.  

It is important to keep in mind that there will likely be other expenses that are not considered closing costs that come up as well when you close on a home. These may include homeowners insurance and property taxes. You will likely have to pay interest on however many days there are remaining in the month. A general estimation of how much homeowners will have to pay in closing costs is around 2-5%. 

Mortgage Payments

Buying a home is the first step in an ongoing series of expenses. It is important to consider mortgage payments along with other monthly expenses when putting together your budget. Factoring those in ensures that you have a good idea of how much money you need to buy a house and what you are signing up for. 

Knowing how much the mortgage will cost you every month is important to consider, since that is something that will remain with you long after closing day. Normally, if you are unable to put at least 20% for the down payment, there is the PMI on top of the principal and interest.

Pathway Homes Can Get You There

Feeling overwhelmed by the numbers yet? Pathway Homes can offer a better way. With our rent-to-own programs, we offer homeowners the ability to buy the home of their dreams with zero down payment and the flexibility to work with their particular financial situations.  

We created lease to own home programs to help new homeowners reach their goals and be able to afford their homes much sooner than other available options can afford.  

  • HomeStart program: This program requires zero down payment. The only thing customers have to pay is a security deposit. If anything happens with the house and/or appliances, we will cover maintenance and pay to have those things repaired. With this program, you can take the time you need to rent as long as you want, or to buy your home when you are ready.  

  • Savings Match program: With this program, customers put down a 2.5% down payment. Renew your lease or buy whenever you are ready. After a couple years of renting from us, we will then match the initial deposit. The money invested in this program will work toward a down payment. 

More from Team Pathway

Explore some of our other articles

Rent-to-Own Homes for Sale in Atlanta, GA

Atlanta

Atlanta, Georgia is among the fastest-growing areas in the US, drawing people in from all over the country to experience its rich culture and commerce.

How Much Money Do You Need To Buy A House?

How To Guides

It can often be misleading how much money is needed to buy a home. Figuring out how much money you need to buy a house also entails more than the seller’s listing price. There are more costs involved than just the down payment, and this can come as a surprise to many new homeowners.

How Much Are Closing Costs?

Home Purchase

How much are closing costs on a house? Depending on where you are located, closing costs on a house can range anywhere from 2-5% of the total loan amount. This factors in property taxes, mortgage insurance, prepaid costs, and other fees.