How Much Money Do I Need to Buy a House?

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  • It's easy to focus only on your down payment and overlook other expenses involved in buying a house. We break them down with cost estimates so you’ll be prepared.

    Common Expenses in a Home Purchase

    Of the following expenses, some will be optional and others will be part of the local custom for home buying in your area.  As always, your Buyer’s Agent & Mortgage Professional will be your guides.

    • Earnest Money/Good Faith Deposit. Usually 1-2% of the purchase price. (it is applied toward your other costs)
    • Down payment. 0% to 20% of the purchase price
    • Home Inspection. $450-650 (depending on size and age of home)
    • Sewer Scope. $150
    • Radon Inspection $150
    • Various other inspections. $0- 500
    • Closing costs & Prepaid expenses. (see “Buyer’s Closing Cost & Prepaids” for full details on these)

    Closing costs are one time expenses.  Prepaid expenses are for future costs like homeowners insurance & property taxes.

    • Credit report. $0-60
    • Application fee. $0-$400
    • Appraisal. $400-550
    • Origination fee. 0 to 1% of loan amount
    • Underwriting fee. $250-700
    • Document preparation. $0-300
    • Processing fee. $0-400
    • Prepaid interest. Your loan interest covering the time from the close date to the end of the month.
    • Lenders title insurance policy. $250-700
    • Flood zone certification. $15-90

    Meet with your Buyer’s Agent & Mortgage Professional before looking at homes to estimate how much money you’ll need.

    • Escrow or closing fee. $200-500
    • Prepaid property taxes. Property taxes typically run from 1-3% of the homes value.  Your lender will require you to have 10-12 months worth of property taxes in your closing costs.
    • Homeowners insurance. $400-700
    • Recording fees. $25-120
    • Excise fee or transfer tax. 0% in Oregon

    Many of these items are closing costs for your loan and you can negotiate to have the seller pay them for you, see Getting the Seller to Pay Closing Costs.   Have your Buyer’s Agent & Mortgage Professional show you which ones you’ll have and what costs you will incur.

    Thinking of buying a home in the Portland, Oregon area? Checkout our First Time Home Buying Classes!

    How Much Money Do I Need to Buy a House? was last modified: May 1st, 2018 by David Axness

    Choose a state from the drop-down menu for specific state information related to this lesson.

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