5 min read May 14, 2024

How Much Do You Really Need for a Down Payment in 2024?

Edited By

Megha Mulchandani

Edited By

Megha Mulchandani

Editor, Houzeo

Megha M. is an adept content editor well-versed in the intricacies of American market dynamics and economic trends. In her free time, she excels as a versatile theatre artist and public speaker.

Find Megha Here

There are misconceptions about how much down payment is needed for a house. As per a survey, more than one-third of Americans believe that it is mandatory to pay a 20% down payment. However, this statement is untrue.

Around 44% of homebuyers put down less than 20%. The average down payment has increased by 118%, from $13,937 in 2019 to $30,500 in 2023.

Find Mortgage Lenders Near You

View 147+ Lenders in the US

📉 Down Payment on a House

  • You can avoid paying for mortgage insurance if you put down 20% on a house.
  • Government-backed loans such as the VA loan and the USDA loan offer zero-down payment mortgages.
  • You can avail conventional loans for a low down payment of 3%.

What Is a Down Payment?

The down payment is the lump sum of money a buyer pays their lender. It is due at closing and represents a percentage of the total purchase price. The purpose of a down payment is to reduce the lender’s risk by ensuring the borrower’s stake in the property.

Do You Need to Put Down 20% on a House?

No, it’s not mandatory to put 20% down on a house. However, 34% of Americans believe that you must put down 20% as a down payment. Having said that, it also allows you to avoid mortgage insurance.

How Is a 20% Down Payment Better Than a Smaller Down Payment?

A 20% down payment comes with multiple benefits:

  • Saves Money: Putting more money down reduces your monthly mortgage payment and may allow you to get better rates or terms.
  • Provides Financial Stability: A larger down payment saves you from interest rate fluctuations. Moreover, it makes the lenders aware of your financial health and escalates the loan approval process.
  • Helps to Avoid PMI: With a 20% down payment, you can avoid paying for private mortgage insurance.

A lower down payment may appear more appealing in the short term, but it will cost more in the long run.

  • High Loan Value: A lower down payment means more borrowed funds. This means that your monthly payments will be higher, and you will pay more interest overall.
  • High Costs: A down payment of less than 20% may increase your cost of borrowing. This may attract a higher interest rate.
  • PMI: You’ll have to pay private mortgage insurance if you put down less than 20% of the home value.

Please provide your name

Please provide your Email

Don’t worry, we won’t spam

Can You Buy a House With No Money Down?

Yes, you can buy a house with a zero-down payment mortgage, but only through government-backed loans. VA loans and USDA loans offer zero-down payment guarantees. However, you must meet the minimum individual qualifications for both loans so that you can buy a house in your budget respectively.

Find Homes for Sale Under Your Specific Budget

Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under
Homes For Sale under

What Is the Minimum Down Payment for a House?

The minimum down payment on a house depends on the type of loan you apply for.

  • Conventional Loans: Down payment requirements on a conventional loan depend on the buyer. While some lenders may ask you to put down 5%, others may ask for 3%. If your credit score is above 620, you may qualify for a lower down payment.
  • FHA Loans: This loan requires a down payment of at least 3.5% with a minimum credit score of 580. However, if your credit score is between 500 and 579, you may get an FHA loan with a 10% down payment.
  • VA Loans: The Department of Veterans Affairs offers this loan without any down payment. Your length of service and discharge reasons determine your eligibility.
  • USDA Loans: A USDA loan doesn’t require a down payment. However, your house must be in an approved rural or suburban area to be qualified for a loan. Moreover, everyone in your household must meet the income requirements.

Bottom Line: How Much Down Payment Is Required for a House?

How much down payment you need for a house depends on your financial goals. Although a 20% down payment has many benefits, it can also put you in financial hardship.

Conventional loans and FHA loans have low down payment requirements of up to 3% and 3.5%, respectively. Moreover, government loans like the USDA loan and the VA loan provide zero-down payment mortgages.

Find Your New Home With Houzeo

With thousands of property listings, Houzeo.com is one of the biggest property listing sites in the US. Find condos, townhouses, co-ops, and other types of homes for sale on Houzeo.

Find Your Dream Home 🏡

View 24,233,708 Homes For Sale in the US

Where do you want to live?

Please enter valid address

» Need More Clarity? Read these exclusive Houzeo reviews and learn why the platform is the best in America’s competitive housing market.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much is the average down payment on a house?

As per NAR, a first-time homebuyer pays an average of 6% as a down payment, whereas repeat buyers put down 17%.

How much is the minimum down payment for a first-time buyer?

While the average down payment for a first-time buyer is 6%, the buyer can opt for a conventional loan with a down payment of 3%.

What credit score do you need for a zero-down home loan?

You need a minimum credit score of 640 to qualify for a zero-down payment mortgage.

Save $20

On Silver & up plans

Use Coupon Code:


Need help? Call us on

(844) 448-0110