Knowing how much cash you will need to get into your next home is important
To help estimate your potential sales proceeds, you can use our dashboard and see if the move you want to make is one you can afford. If you’re planning to buy, here are some costs you can count on. Inside this article:
Moving and repair cost
First, of course, you’ll need a down payment. Traditionally, 20 percent is the gold standard for down payments. If you have at least that much in equity from your current home, you’ll find more lenders to choose from, lower interest rates and you won’t pay any form of private mortgage insurance (PMI).
But if you aren’t getting enough from your sale proceeds to hit that 20 percent, there are lower down payment loans that may make sense. If you are a U.S. veteran, you can even get a zero-down VA loan without any PMI.
A lot of repeat home buyers don’t realize they may still qualify for an FHA loan. With an FHA loan, you can get in with just 3.5 percent down. The downside is that you’ll be paying the PMI for the life of the loan if you put down less than 10 percent.
Even if you don’t qualify for an FHA loan, you can get a traditional mortgage with as little as 5 percent down but you’ll have to pay PMI. In addition, there are some low-down payment programs you may qualify for, based on your income. Beware, however, that most of these programs are geared toward first-time home buyers.
As a seller, you’ll pay both your real estate agent and the buyer’s agent a commission. You will also pay real estate sales taxes and title transfer fees.
But buyers don’t escape the pain of closing costs either. In fact, you may have been asked to help your buyer pay for some of theirs. In general, buyer’s closing costs are less than the seller’s, but still run anywhere from 3 to 5 percent of the sales price. So unless you can negotiate closing costs as part of your purchase contract, add that to your down payment when calculating what you’ll need.
Moving and repair costs
These can vary widely depending how far the move is, how much stuff you have, and how willing you are to enlist friends and family to help. For a professional move across country, you’ll be in it for thousands of dollars. If you’re just moving across town and have friends with pickup trucks, it could just set you back some gas money and the cost of some pizzas and beer. But once decide how you’ll move and learn what it costs, add that to your final number.