## What To Do Before You Buy

Whatever you can afford, you want to get the best mortgage ratesand you want to be in the best position to make an offer on your house. Make these steps part of your preparation:

**Check your credit score.**Your can have a direct affect on the interest rate you’ll pay. Check your score, and do what you can to improve it. You can get a free credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com.**Get pre-approved.**Go to a lender and get pre-approved for a loan before you make an offer on a house. It will put you in a much stronger bargaining position.

## Finding The Right Lender

One place to start is with , a site that allows you to get quotes from three lenders in only three minutes. Theres no obligation, but if you see a rate you like for your mortgage or refinancing your mortgage, you can progress to the next step of the application process. Everything is handled through the website, including uploading documents. If you want to speak to a loan officer, you can, of course, but it isnt necessary.

As you shop for a lender, remember that every dollar counts. Youre committing to a monthly mortgage payment based on the rate you choose at the very start. Even small savings on your interest rate will add up over the years youre in your house.

is another great place to get started since they allow you to shop and compare multiple rates and quotes with minimal information, all in one place. Youll input the amount of the loan, your down payment, state, mortgage product type, and your credit score to get mortgage quotes from multiple lenders at once.

In the market for a house sometime soon? Use our resources to target your searchand know well in advance what you can afford:

## How Much House Can You Afford The 28/36 Rule Will Help You Decide

You found your dream home, but can you safely afford it? Before you commit to the biggest financial decision of your life, consider the 28/36 rule.

The rule is used by lenders to determine what you can afford, according to Ramit Sethi, best-selling author of I Will Teach You to Be Rich.

Its used by lenders, but its also a really helpful tool for us as individuals to decide how much debt we can afford, Sethi tells NBC News.

The rule is simple. When considering a mortgage, make sure your:

- maximum household expenses wont exceed 28 percent of your gross monthly income
- total household debt doesnt exceed more than 36 percent of your gross monthly income .

In other words, if your maximum household expenses and total household debt are at or lower than 28/36, you should be able to safely afford the home.

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## The Ideal Dti: Your Mortgage Vs Your Income

Under the Dodd-Frank Act, lenders are required to assess the borrowers ability to repay his/her mortgage based on credit scores, DTI and so on. If lenders are doing their part, they should be able to make a qualified mortgage which is free of harmful and risky features.

A QM, for example, has a total DTI ratio including the mortgage payments of 43% at the very most. Even with this 43% threshold, lenders generally require a more stringent DTI ratio of 28%. This means that no more than 28% of your monthly income should go to your mortgage payment every month.

Say youre making $4,648 every month. Twenty-eight percent of this amount is $1,301 . This is your ideal mortgage payment, anything greater than this could be burdensome unless you are expecting a pay raise, promotion, or a windfall perhaps later on.

## Dont Forget To Factor In Closing Costs

Alright, dont freak out here. But a down payment isnt the only cash youll need to save up to buy a home. There are also closing costs to consider.

On average, closing costs are about 34% of the purchase price of your home.1 Your lender and real estate agent buddies will let you know exactly how much your closing costs are so you can pay for them on closing day.

These costs cover important parts of the home-buying process, such as:

- Appraisal fees
- Attorneys
- Home insurance

Dont forget to factor your closing costs into your overall home-buying budget. For example, if youre purchasing a $200,000 home, multiply that by 4% and youll get an estimated closing cost of $8,000. Add that amount to your 20% down payment , and the total cash youll need to purchase your home is $48,000.

If you dont have the additional $8,000 for closing costs, youll either need to hold off on your home purchase until youve saved up the extra cash or youll have to shoot a little lower on your home price range.

Whatever you do, dont let the closing costs keep you from making the biggest down payment possible. The bigger the down payment, the less youll owe on your mortgage!

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## Use Our Mortgage Calculator To Determine Your Home Budget

Sure, you could crunch the numbers yourself by dividing a home price by 180 months and then multiplying the decreasing monthly principal balance by your interest rate. But if you’re anything like us, you probably broke a sweat just reading that formula.

To save yourself the time and headache of doing a ton of math, we built a mortgage calculator to do that for you*phew!*

Sticking with our example of an income of $5,000 a month, you could afford these options on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage at a 4% interest rate:

- $187,767 home with a 10% down payment
- $211,238 home with a 20% down payment
- $241,415 home with a 30% down payment
- $281,650 home with a 40% down payment

Remember: This is just a ballpark! Dont forget that grown-up stuff like property taxes and home insurance will top off your monthly payment with another few hundred dollars or so . And if you think youll be buying a home thats part of a homeowners association , youll need to factor those lovely fees in as well.

For example, if you plug in a mortgage amount of $211,238 with a 20% down payment at a 4% interest rate, youll find that your maximum monthly payment of $1,250 increases to $1,515 when you add in $194 for taxes and $71 for insurance. To get that number back down to a monthly housing budget of $1,250, youll need to lower the price of the house you can afford to $172,600.

## How To Calculate My Monthly Car Payment

- Calculate your budget. An estimate of 10% can be spent on your car payment.
- Determine the car you want to buy and the price.
- Check your credit history.
- and find the best price.
- Use the monthly car payment calculator to calculate how much your monthly payment will be and how changing factors will affect it. Find the most suitable payment structure.

How much of my paycheck should i saveHow much money should I save from each pay check? It can be difficult to decide how much you can save on salary, but a good rule of thumb is to save 20% of your income. This is a healthy amount that can help you build emergency reserves and plan for both short-term and long-term goals.How much can be garnished out of a paycheck?Federal law puts limits on how much believers can take from your sa

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## Examples Of Mortgage Payment Percentage

Now, lets look at some examples of mortgage payment percentages so you can work out how much you can afford to borrow from a lender and what percentage of income you need for your mortgage.

What value of property can you afford on a $60,000 a year income?

As mentioned above, the rule of thumb is that you can typically afford a mortgage two to 2.5 times your yearly wage. Thats a mortgage between $120,000 and $150,000 at $60,000 per annum. However, youll have to be able to afford the monthly mortgage payments.

What are the payments on a $200,000 mortgage?

Lets imagine a $200,000, 30-year mortgage with a 4% interest rate. This would set you back about $954 per month.

What are the monthly payments on a $300,000 mortgage?

With a 4% fixed interest rate, monthly mortgage payments on a 30-year mortgage would total around $1,432.25 a month. However, if you opt for a 15-year plan, it could cost up to $2,219.06 a month.

## How Do You Calculate Take Home Pay

How to calculate net pay. Determine your gross annual salary, which is the total amount you earn per year before deductions. Divide that by 52 to find your weekly salary. If the amount is between £110 and £844, divide it by 100 and multiply it by 11 to find the amount of Social Security you have to pay.

Irr excelHow do you calculate the internal rate of return in Excel? Excel’s IRR function calculates an internal rate of return for a range of cash flows, assuming the payment terms are the same. Using the example data above, the formula would be IRR = IRR * 12, which is the internal rate of return in magnitude.What does IRR tell you?The IRR, or Internal Rate of Return, is a useful measure of unde

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## What House Can I Afford On 50k A Year

A person who makes $50,000 a year might be able to afford a house worth anywhere **from $180,000 to nearly $300,000**. That’s because salary isn’t the only variable that determines your home buying budget. You also have to consider your credit score, current debts, mortgage rates, and many other factors.

## How To Determine The Percentage Of Income For Mortgage

When you purchase a home, its vital to know what percentage of your income will be saved for your mortgage . Housing ratios and debt-to-income ratios are ways of calculating the percentage of gross income for mortgage payments and who qualifies for mortgage loans. Debt to income ratios work using the 28/36 rule , which well explain in detail later in this post.

What is the housing ratio? Simply put, the housing expense ratio is a ratio that compares your pre-tax income to housing expenses on the real-estate market. Lenders use this calculation when they decide who will qualify to borrow for a loan.Understanding what percentage of your monthly income should go to your mortgage payments can help you budget and live comfortably. Nobody wants to be house poor, struggling to make ends meet in order to make mortgage payments.

If youre wondering what is another term for housing ratio ? Its sometimes referred to as the front-end ratio as it is a partial component of a borrowers total debt-to-income. Therefore, it should be considered early in the underwriting process for a mortgage loan.

Dont worry, well be explaining front-end ratios, back end ratios, gross income, net income, and mortgage percentage payments as you read on. We will follow this up with some essential guidelines for obtaining an affordable mortgage.

But first, lets answer a fundamental question:

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## Rule : Consider Your Total Housing Payment Not Just The Mortgage

Most agree that your housing budget should encompass not only your mortgage payment , but also property taxes and all housing-related insurancehomeowners insurance and PMI. To find homeowners insurance, we recommend visiting . Theyre what we call an insurance aggregator, which means they compile all the best rates from around the online marketplace and present you with the best ones.

As for just how big a percentage of your income that housing budget should be? It all depends on whom you ask.

## The 30% Rule Doesnt Make Sense For High Earners Either

And if youre making $300,000 per year? The 30% rule would prescribe spending $7,500 a month on rent.

Quick calculations:$300,000 / 12 months = $25,000 x .3 =$7,500 per month on rent and $13,000 a month left over for other payments and savings.

Friedberg says even high earners may have debt, child support, alimony, elder care or other substantial expenses like saving for retirement. And in the long run, paying 30% on rent may be an irresponsible practice.

High earning individuals with a passion for their job and a commitment to their location might consider making a better investment in a house, condo or an apartment, says Friedberg.

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## Don’t Be Fooled By The 5

Kaplan says homeowners usually need to stay put for at least five years to make the closing costs of buying a home worthwhile. That’s a useful rule of thumb, but if you’re thinking of staying that long, you may be tempted to opt for a mortgage that’s higher than you can comfortably afford now. Be careful. Predicting future income isnt as easy as it may seem. Kaplan cautions that stretching your budget can backfire if you become unemployed for an extended period.

When they’re planning for the long term, many homebuyers may also see their home as an investment for the future, which can be an excuse for spending more today than they can easily afford. But real estate can be volatile, as we saw in the 2008 housing crash. Having too much of your net worth tied up in your home can be risky.

## First: What Is A Mortgage Payment

Mortgage payments are the amount you pay lenders for the loan on your home or property, including principal and interest. Sometimes, these payments may also include property or real estate taxes, which increase the amount you pay. Typically, a mortgage payment goes toward your principal, interest, taxes and insurance.

Many homeowners make payments once a month. But there are other options, such as a twice a month or every two weeks.

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## Where Does The 30% Rule For Rent Come From

The 30% rule of thumb for rent traces its roots to the 1930s, specifically the National Housing Act of 1937. This act created the public housing program for low-income families and established guidelines for maximum rents for them.

Over the years, the original maximum rent threshold gradually increased from 20% of income to 25%, then to 30% in 1981. This amount remains the standard for most public housing programs and is generally used as the yardstick to determine how much you should spend on rent at most income levels.

Interestingly, the 30% rule applies to rent, but there’s a different number that’s used for mortgage payments. Mortgage lenders typically look for borrowers whose combined monthly housing and debt payments don’t exceed 43% of their income.

The 30% rule is rent-specific and doesn’t include other necessary housing costs, such as utilities or renter’s insurance.

## Know How Much Home You Can Afford

Before you even start looking for a home, you need to know exactly how much home you can afford â otherwise, you could spend time looking at homes that are out of your price range. If that happens, it’s hard not to be disappointed later when you view less expensive homes.

To get an idea of what you can afford, you’ll need to take into account the following:

- Your household income
- Your current debts and your monthly payments associated with those debts
- Your estimated monthly housing-related costs, including mortgage payment, property taxes, property insurance, condominium fees, school taxes, utilities and maintenance costs
- Your anticipated closing costs and other one-time costs
- Your current spending practices

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## How Lenders Decide The Loan Amount You Can Afford

The lender considers your debt-to-income ratio, which is a comparison of your gross income to housing and nonhousing expenses. Non-housing expenses include debts such as car payments, student loan payments, alimony, or child support. According to the FHA, monthly mortgage payments should be no more than 29% of gross income, while the mortgage payment, combined with non-housing expenses, should total no more than 41% of your income. Different loan programs will naturally have different guidelines.

The lender also considers cash available for down payment and closing costs, credit history, bill payment history, etc. when determining your maximum loan amount. Additionally, you may also want to estimate how much of a house payment you can afford to get a better idea of the loan amount you may need. If so, complete the How Much Can You Afford worksheet below.

## Realize That Other Expenses May Come Up

Even if your mortgage doesn’t stretch your budget, an unexpected job loss or other event could cause you to struggle to make your mortgage payments. The more affordable a home is in the first place, the better chance youll have of recovering.

Building up an emergency fund is easier if you limit your mortgage payment to 25 percent of your take-home pay. The more cash you have on hand, and the lower your monthly obligations, the better chance youll have of staying afloat if difficult times strike.

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## How To Estimate Affordability

There is a rule of thumb about how much you can afford, based on the calculations your mortgage provider will make. __The rule of thumb is you can afford a mortgage where your monthly housing costs are no more than 32% of your gross household income, and where your total debt load is no more than 40% of your gross houshold income.__ This rule is based on your debt service ratios.

Lenders look at two ratios when determining the mortgage amount you qualify for, which generally indicate how much you can afford. These ratios are called the Gross Debt Service ratio and Total Debt Service ratio. They take into account your income, monthly housing costs, and overall debt load.

The first affordability guideline, as set out by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation , is that your monthly housing costs â mortgage principal and interest, taxes, and heating expenses – should not exceed 32% of your gross household monthly income. For condominiums, P.I.T.H. also includes half of your monthly condominium fees. The sum of these housing costs as a percentage of your gross monthly income is your GDS ratio.

**Gross Debt Service Ratio**