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Do You Need to Put 20% to Buy a Home?

Here’s how conventional, FHA, and VA loans make home buying possible for those just getting started.

Do you need 20% down to buy a home? The answer is absolutely not. There are plenty of programs out there that don’t require 20%; you can put down as little as 3% on a conventional loan, 3.5% on an FHA loan, and for veterans—zero percent down on a VA loan. 

The USDA also offers a zero percent down payment program, though that property does have to be in a USDA-eligible area. 

So, as you can see, it’s truly a misconception that you need 20% down. Also, for buyers, there is sometimes a cost to waiting. Here’s what I mean: Let’s say you have a $400,000 home—roughly the average for our area. 20% down on that would be $80,000. For some people, that might take four to five years, if not longer, to save up that amount. 


Sometimes, acting sooner than later pays off.


In that same time frame, let’s conservatively say that home prices appreciate 3%, so our $400,000 example house is now $450,000. Now, your 20% down payment equals $90,000. 

Waiting actually costs you $10,000 more in down payment; sometimes, acting sooner than later pays off. 

As always, give me a call if you have questions about financing options or if you’re thinking about buying or selling a home soon. I’d be more than happy to explore your particular situation and see if we can pair you with a trusted lender whose options fit your needs.

Kittle Real Estate
Kittle Real Estate
Kittle Real Estate