Do You Have To Put 20% Down on a House?

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Published June 13, 2022
Young family moving to a new home without having to put 20% down on the house.
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Homebuyers make a median down payment of 12%. If qualified, you can put as little as 3% down on a home with a conventional loan.

While making a 20% down payment isn’t required, you’ll get a better deal on your mortgage if you do it.

Benefits of Buying a House With 20% Down

Here are some of the biggest benefits of making a large down payment:

  • Score a better interest rate and pay less for your loan.
  • Have lower monthly mortgage payments.
  • Avoid paying for private mortgage insurance.
  • Have an offer that’s more attractive to the seller.

Drawbacks of Putting 20% Down

At the same time, there are some downsides to putting more money down:

  • Leaves less money in your savings for emergencies and to put toward other expenses or financial goals.
  • Can take longer to save for a down payment and buy a home.

Is It Worth Putting 20% Down?

Whether it’s worth making a 20% down payment will depend on your financial situation and personal goals. If you can afford it — or are willing to take the time to save up — then you’ll likely save money by getting lower interest rates and avoiding mortgage insurance. However, if you’re eager to become a homeowner ASAP, then you might choose a loan with a low down payment that lets you put less than 20% down and eat the higher cost of your loan.


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