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Down payment on a house: How much should you pay?

3.5% down payment

Federal Housing Administration loans (or FHA loans) require as little as 3.5% down payment, but your credit score must be at least 580. FHA loans require a 10% down payment if your credit score falls between 500 and 579.

10% down payment

Jumbo loans typically require a 10% minimum down payment. These types of loans, which are outside of Federal Housing Finance Agency conforming loan limits, cannot be guaranteed by GSEs, meaning lenders often require higher down payments to mitigate some of the risks.

Closing costs are the fees for services that helped to officially close the deal on the property. Typically, home buyers will pay between 3% and 4% of the sales price in closing costs.

Closing costs, for home buyers, often include a home inspection paid prior to closing day, as well as a home appraisal and other loan-related costs such as title insurance, origination fees, homeowners’ insurance and taxes.

The cost of home inspection—which is usually about the same as the home appraisal—is for a professional to examine the property to spot and issues or damages prior to buying. Both the home inspection and the home appraisal can cost anywhere from $280 to $400. Both these costs are essentially the lender’s assurances that the home is worth the money you are being lent.

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