Calculate Your Budget

Remember that you’ll need cash for upfront costs. How much cash you’ll need to buy a house will depend on factors such as the price of your home, your financing options, or even what negotiations you make with the seller.

And thinking about what you are comfortable paying every month is another way to truly understand what you can buy, which is every bit as important as the loan amount you may qualify for with a mortgage lender.

Here are 5 common expenses that may factor in:

1. Down Payments

Many down payments are between 3% and 20% of the sale price, but the specific amount of down payment required by a mortgage lender varies.
Contact a Mr. Cooper Mortgage Professional for more information.

2. Closing Costs

It’s usually smart to prepare for 2%–6% of the purchase price. So, if you’re buying a home worth $200,000, you might pay $6,000–$12,000 in closing costs. (See Understanding Closing Costs for more details.)

3. Property Taxes and Insurance

Property taxes and homeowners insurance can also contribute to how much cash is needed upfront to buy a home. Mortgage lenders often require you to put deposits toward these expenses in an escrow account so the lender can pay them on your behalf later.

4. Cash Reserves

Some lenders require borrowers to have a cash reserve. Checking and savings accounts are common cash reserve options, but lenders may also accept other liquid assets such as money market funds, stocks, and certificates of deposit.

5. Moving Costs

Don’t forget about non-mortgage-related expenses like moving costs, utility deposits, and new furniture. According to, the average “long-distance move” of 1,000 miles can cost almost $5,000.

Crunch the Numbers

Use our mortgage calculators to find a monthly mortgage payment that makes you feel comfortable. You can plug in the numbers to find your ideal price range, get a sense of your monthly mortgage payment amount, and identify how much you can—and should—borrow.