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inancing your home purchase

electing the best financing package available is as important as finding a home that meets your needs. In fact, determining how much you can afford before you begin your home search will save you valuable time in purchasing the right home.

There are three factors to consider in figuring how much you can afford: Down payment, Ability to qualify for a mortgage, and Closing costs.

Most loans require a down payment between 5 and 20 percent of the home price, however there are certain programs that will allow a purchaser to put down as little as 3 percent. If you are able to make a down payment of 20 percent or more, you may qualify for special mortgage programs offered by a variety of lenders and you will not have the extra expense of private mortgage insurance.

Most lenders require that your monthly mortgage payment, including principal, interest, taxes and insurance, should not exceed 28% of your gross monthly income. They also look for your total installment debt (regular scheduled payments of 6-months or longer), including the proposed monthly mortgage payment on your new loan, to not exceed 36% of your gross monthly income. In addition to your gross monthly income, lenders review your employment history, stability and potential for increasing your income. They also evaluate any additional income, such as bonuses, commissions and child support.


A credit report is also requested, to verify your debt repayment, outstanding debt and available credit. Assets are also calculated, including checking and savings account balances, CDs, stocks and bonds.

Avoiding any late payments on credit accounts and limiting your credit purchases helps keep your credit report in good standing. If you have items on your credit report that could negatively influence your ability to secure a mortgage, be prepared to explain each situation in writing. You should also consider delaying major purchases until after you've moved into your new home.

Closing costs typically range between 2 and 5 percent of your loan amount. These fees are due in cash at the time of closing, or sometimes can be included in the loan.

Taking the time to pre-qualify for a mortgage before you begin your home search will put you in a better negotiating position, because the seller is assured that the transaction will not be delayed while you secure financing.

If you would like assistance in determining how much house you can afford or learn about financing options, please go to the Contact page or call me right now at (715) 498-1248.

Want to know about Tax breaks available to home owner's?

Recommended Books

How to Get the Best Home LoanHow to Get the Best Home Loan

All About MortgagesAll About Mortgages: Insider Tips for Financing and Refinancing Your Home

The Mortgage KitThe Mortgage Kit

Steiner's Complete How-To-Talk Mortgage TalkSteiner's Complete How-To-Talk Mortgage Talk



Mike Burns,
REALTOR®, Broker-Associate

The Real Estate Group, Inc

5725 Windy Dr Suite E
Stevens Point, WI 54482

Direct: 715 295-5008
Cell: 715 498-1248
Fax: 715 295-5006

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