In some cases, lenders may qualify you for a higher payment than is comfortable for you to make. I have bought homes where my payment was 25% of my gross household income and others which had a payment that was 33% of my gross. I can tell you with confidence it is much more comfortable to buy a home that is at 25% of my gross pay.

Does that mean I’ve never stretched to 33%? No, I have. It’s just that I have had to curtail my lifestyle for a little while I worked through that.

Some lenders will qualify you for even higher payment than 33% of your gross household income. I caution you to look carefully at your budget before you do that. As much of a PIA as it is, start tracking your expenses now so that you know what a comfortable payment will be. I think it was my second home where I really looked at the grocery budget and realized it was completely out of control. Once we adjusted that, the payment became comfortable – but we had to track it to know that we had turned into hogs at the grocery store.

In our first zoom meeting together, I can take a couple of data points about your finances, and we can ballpark about where your payment is comfortable. Once we know your down payment amount, we can work backwards through the numbers and arrive at what your maximum purchase price is to obtain a specific payment amount.

If your payment is too high, your home is going to feel more like a jail, than a home. It is not worth giving up the enjoyment of life to get a bigger, better home. In my experience, most buyers stairstep their way up to the bigger, better home as their financial situation is improves. I find this to be more prudent, and more enjoyable for the buyer.

No worries, we will work together to ensure that your home does not become your jail.