Mortgage Down Payment Calculator
How to calculate your down payment
When you buy a home, you’ll most likely need to make an upfront down payment, or pay a percentage of the home’s price, such as 3 percent or 10 percent. These funds go directly to the purchase of the home, and can come from your savings, a gift from family or a friend, proceeds from the sale of another home, grants and other sources. You’ll finance the remainder of the home’s purchase price with a mortgage.
The bigger your down payment, the less you’ll need to borrow. This calculator helps illustrate what happens when you put down more or less. To use it:
- Input your minimum down payment. This is the lowest amount of money you’re able to put towards your home purchase. If you’re getting a conventional mortgage loan, for example, your down payment might be as little as 3 percent of the home’s price.
- Input your maximum down payment. This is the highest amount of money you’re willing and able to put toward your home purchase.
- Input the home’s purchase price.
- Input the loan term in months. For a 30-year mortgage, this equates to 360 months.
- Input the interest rate on your mortgage. You might already know your rate if you have a preapproval from a lender. If not, you can make an educated estimate based on your credit score and prevailing market rates.
Once you enter this information, you’ll learn how your monthly mortgage payment changes based on a higher or lower down payment amount, as well as how much you could save on your mortgage over time if you put more money down.
Benefits of a larger down payment
With a larger down payment, you won’t have to borrow as much mortgage to complete the purchase of your home. On the surface, this means you’ll have a lower monthly mortgage payment and save real money on interest charges. This also might keep you from taking on more debt than you can handle.
On a deeper level, you’ll get a lower interest rate, too. That’s because you’re taking on less mortgage, making you a lower risk for a lender. In addition, you’ll have that much more instant equity to pull from, plus a lower mortgage insurance premium or the ability to avoid these premiums altogether. For the most common types of mortgages, lenders charge premiums when you put less than 20 percent down.
- Conventional loan: 3%-5%, depending on lender and type
- FHA loan: 3.5%
- Jumbo loan: 10%-20% or more, depending on lender
- VA loan: 0%
- USDA loan: 0%
How to prepare for a down payment
If you’re struggling to prepare to make a down payment, you’re not alone. With the gaping mismatch between income growth and home price appreciation, many homebuyers can’t feasibly save much. There are programs, savings vehicles and strategies that can help, including:
- Automating your savings
- Deferred- or low-interest second mortgages or other assistance programs
- Free or forgivable grants
- High-yield savings account
- CD or MMA
- Apps to help you save
- Basic budgeting and saving tips
Next steps to get a mortgage
When you know your down payment amount, you can more confidently shop for a mortgage. Get quotes or preapprovals from three lenders based on your projected down payment. Be sure to ask each whether you qualify for down payment help — some lenders participate in state-sponsored programs, while others offer their own forms of assistance.