Deed of Trust vs Mortgage: What Are the Differences You Should Know?

If you finance a home, the lender will have you sign either a deed of trust or a mortgage. A mortgage is an agreement between you and the lender, but a deed of trust adds a neutral third party that holds title to the real estate.

Many states allow either choice. Thanks to an easier foreclosure process, many lenders prefer a deed of trust to a mortgage, so it is important for borrowers to grasp the nuances of these documents.

Mortgage Loans 101

To understand the difference between a deed of trust and a mortgage, it helps to first know some mortgage basics. A mortgage is a loan that’s used to purchase a piece of real estate. First, the borrower applies for a loan from among the different mortgage types. Once approved, they sign a mortgage note, promising to pay the lender back over a specified time with agreed-upon terms. The real estate serves as collateral for the loan.

You may hear a mortgage note referred to as a promissory note. In any case, it’s a legally binding document.

Mortgage Transfer

A mortgage transfer takes place when a borrower assigns what is typically an assumable mortgage to another person. Most mortgage loans are non-transferable. That said, in the case of marital separation, divorce, death, or other unusual circumstance, a mortgage transfer is sometimes permitted.

FHA, VA, and USDA loans, insured by the government and issued by private lenders, are assumable if the buyer qualifies.

Mortgage Foreclosure

When a borrower defaults on making mortgage loan payments as agreed upon, the lender may start legal proceedings to take ownership of the property and resell it to recover funds owed to the financial institution.

A mortgage foreclosure can take place when a borrower doesn’t meet other terms of the agreement, but failing to make payments is the most common reason. A variety of mortgage relief programs help borrowers stave off foreclosure.

What Is a Deed of Trust?

Some states incorporate a deed of trust into their home loan process, while financial institutions in other states can choose to do so or not. A deed of trust is an agreement that’s signed at a home’s closing that states how a neutral third party — typically the title company — will hold legal title to the home until the borrower pays the loan off. (It is not the same thing as the deed to the house.)

Terms to know include the following:

•   Trustor: the borrower

•   Beneficiary: the financial institution loaning the money

•   Trustee: a third party that will legally hold the title until the loan is paid off

Deed of Trust Transfer

If the borrower pays off the mortgage loan, the third-party trustee dissolves the trust involved and transfers the title of the real estate to the borrower.

If the borrower sells the home before the balance owed is paid in full, the trustee takes the sales proceeds and pays the lender what is still owed and gives the borrower/trustor the rest of the money.

Deed of Trust Foreclosure

As with a mortgage, there are clauses in the deed of trust agreement that will trigger foreclosure proceedings. In this case, the trustee will sell the property and distribute the funds appropriately.

Similarities Between a Mortgage and a Deed of Trust

Both a mortgage and a deed of trust are used when someone buys a home and takes out a loan to complete the purchase. Under each structure, the lender has the option to foreclose on the home if terms and conditions agreed upon by the buyer are not met.

In states where either option is allowed, the lender will decide which one to use.

Key Differences Between a Mortgage and a Deed of Trust

Here’s the big one: ease of foreclosure by a private trust company when a deed of trust is in place. But let’s look at how all the differences line up, below.

Mortgage Deed of Trust
Number of parties Two: borrower and lender Three: trustor (borrower), beneficiary (lender), trustee
Transfers Uncommon Part of the transaction when loan is paid off
Foreclosure Typically involves court Typically handled outside court system, which is usually faster and less costly

How to Determine If You Have a Mortgage or a Deed of Trust

Although deed of trust versus mortgage differences may seem reasonably small, it can make sense to be clear about which one you have. Look at a mortgage statement to find your loan servicer and ask.

A longer route: Mortgages and deeds of trust are publicly filed documents, so you could seek out the local government agency that manages these kinds of records and get a copy.

The Takeaway

A deed of trust and a mortgage are the two main systems for securing home loans. One key difference is the presence of a neutral third party in deeds of trust. The trustee holds legal rights over the real estate securing the loan. It’s easy to get lost in the forest of mortgage matters. A mortgage help center can lend a hand.

Looking for an affordable option for a home mortgage loan? SoFi can help: We offer low down payments (as little as 3% - 5%*) with our competitive and flexible home mortgage loans. Plus, applying is extra convenient: It's online, with access to one-on-one help.

SoFi Mortgages: simple, smart, and so affordable.

FAQ

Who can be listed on a deed of trust or mortgage?

On a deed of trust, all three parties are listed: the trustor (borrower), beneficiary (lender), and trustee (third party that holds the title until the loan is paid in full). With a mortgage, there is no third party involved.

How are mortgages and deeds of trust recorded in public records?

A deed of trust will be filed and recorded in public records in the county where the house exists. A similar process takes place for mortgage deed recordings. The recorded documents could be located at a county clerk’s office, a public recorder’s office, or an office of public records.

Is your title separate from deed of trust and mortgage?

Yes. A title is a concept rather than a physical document like a deed of trust or a mortgage note, and it refers to a person’s legal ownership of a home or other property. When a property is sold, the title is transferred from the current owner to the buyer.

Does a mortgage involve a trustee like a deed of trust?

No. Deeds of trust require a trustee, but a mortgage does not.


Photo credit: iStock/zimmytws

SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC). For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal. Equal Housing Lender.


SoFi Mortgages
Terms, conditions, and state restrictions apply. Not all products are available in all states. See SoFi.com/eligibility for more information.


*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

¹FHA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by FHA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. FHA loans require an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP), which may be financed or paid at closing, in addition to monthly Mortgage Insurance Premiums (MIP). Maximum loan amounts vary by county. The minimum FHA mortgage down payment is 3.5% for those who qualify financially for a primary purchase. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.
Veterans, Service members, and members of the National Guard or Reserve may be eligible for a loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by VA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. VA loans typically require a one-time funding fee except as may be exempted by VA guidelines. The fee may be financed or paid at closing. The amount of the fee depends on the type of loan, the total amount of the loan, and, depending on loan type, prior use of VA eligibility and down payment amount. The VA funding fee is typically non-refundable. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.

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Home Loan vs Mortgage: What You Should Know

You’ll likely hear the terms home loan and mortgage used interchangeably, but the phrase “home loan” is an umbrella term that covers a variety of mortgages, home refinances, and home equity loans.

It’s helpful to understand the difference between a typical mortgage, used to buy a home, and home equity loans, which are used to tap the equity you’ve gained.

What Is a Mortgage?

Mortgages are loans used when buying a home or other real estate. When you take out a mortgage, your lender is loaning you the money you need to buy a home in exchange for charging you interest. You’ll repay the loan and interest in monthly installments.

Mortgages are secured loans, meaning the property is used as collateral. If you fail to make mortgage payments, your lender can foreclose on the home to recoup its money.

In order to take out a mortgage, you’ll typically need to make a down payment equal to a percentage of the purchase price. Your down payment is the portion of the cost of the home that you aren’t financing and provides immediate equity in the property.

Buyers may put down 20% on conventional mortgages to avoid private mortgage insurance (PMI), but many buyers put down much less. In fact, the median down payment for all homebuyers was 14.7% in 2023, according to a National Association of Realtors® report. A mortgage calculator can help you determine what effect the size of your down payment will have on your monthly payments.

When shopping for a home, you can seek mortgage preapproval. After investigating your financial history, your lender will provide you with a letter stating how much money you can likely borrow and at what interest rate.

Types of Mortgages

There are several types of mortgages available. Mortgage insurance, in the form of PMI or mortgage insurance premiums (MIP), may be part of the deal. It’s good to understand PMI vs MIP.

•   Conventional mortgages are funded by private lenders like banks and credit unions. They are not backed by a government agency. You’ll typically need to pay PMI if you don’t make a 20% down payment; mortgage insurance is canceled when 22% equity is reached. Conventional conforming loans adhere to lending limits set each year by the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

•   Jumbo loans are mortgages that exceed the lending limits set for conventional loans. So a jumbo loan is a “nonconforming” loan. Conventional lenders issue jumbo loans, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs guarantees a VA jumbo loan, possibly with no down payment.

•   FHA loans are made by private lenders and guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration. You may qualify to make a down payment of as little as 3.5%. Upfront and annual MIPs are required, usually for the life of the loan.

•   USDA loans are backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and help low- to moderate-income households buy property in designated rural and suburban areas. No down payment is required. An upfront and annual guarantee fee are required.

•   VA loans are designed for active-duty and veteran military service members and some surviving spouses. VA loans don’t require a minimum down payment in most cases. There’s no MIP; there is a one-time funding fee.

What Is a Home Equity Loan?

A home equity loan is frequently known as a second mortgage. Home equity loans allow homeowners to borrow against the portion of their home they own outright. As with typical mortgages, home equity loans are secured using the home as collateral.

The amount you’re able to borrow will be determined by a few factors, including your credit history and how much equity you’ve built — in other words, the current value of your house less any outstanding debt. The borrower may pay closing costs based on the loan amount.

It’s common for lenders to allow you to borrow up to 80% of the equity you’ve established. The loan arrives in a lump sum. You repay the home equity loan with interest over a set period of time. If you miss payments, your lender can foreclose on the house. (A home equity loan is not to be confused with a home equity line of credit, or HELOC. In the latter, your home equity is collateral, but rather than receiving a lump sum, you have a revolving line of credit and can borrow and repay the debt repeatedly as needed during a given time period — typically a decade.)

Another way to tap home equity is with a cash-out refinance, when you take out a new loan to pay off your old one and free up equity.

Similarities Between a Home Equity Loan and a Mortgage

When you apply for a mortgage as part of the homebuying process, or when you seek a home equity loan as a homeowner, lenders will look into your financial history to help them establish terms and the interest rate for the loan. For example, they will examine your credit reports, often awarding more favorable terms and interest rates to those with higher scores. Mortgages and home equity loans are both secured loans.

Differences Between a Home Equity Loan and a Mortgage

A mortgage must be used to purchase a specific property. There are fewer limitations on the money received from a home equity loan.

Mortgage interest can be deducted if you itemize your deductions. However, you can only deduct interest on a home equity loan if you use the loan to buy, build, or substantially improve your main or second home. So if you want to buy a boat, that deduction won’t hold water.

When You Should Consider a Mortgage

If you don’t have the cash to buy a home outright, you will have to finance the purchase with a mortgage. However, there are some considerations you may want to take into account. For example, the larger your down payment, the more equity you will have in your home and the smaller your monthly mortgage payments will be.

Because you have more equity in the home, the lender will see you as less risky. As a result, larger down payments also tend to translate into lower interest rates. So, consider putting down as much as you can afford to.

Also, even if you have the cash to pay for a home in full, you may consider a mortgage anyway. You may not want to tie up cash that could be used for other purposes, such as in an emergency. You may be able to invest that money and earn a return that’s higher than the interest rate you’d pay on the loan.

When You Should Consider a Home Loan

Many people choose to take out home equity loans to make home improvements. That can increase the value of your home, putting you ahead if you ever choose to sell.

You may also consider a home equity loan when consolidating other debt, including high-interest credit card debt. The average interest rate for a home equity loan remains significantly lower than the average credit card rate. As a result, it can make financial sense to pay off the more expensive debt with a new, cheaper loan.

The Takeaway

Home equity loan vs. mortgage? One uses a home as collateral on a loan; the other gets a buyer into a home. If you’re looking for a home equity loan, a mortgage, or a refinance, it’s a good idea to compare rates and terms.

Looking for an affordable option for a home mortgage loan? SoFi can help: We offer low down payments (as little as 3% - 5%*) with our competitive and flexible home mortgage loans. Plus, applying is extra convenient: It's online, with access to one-on-one help.

SoFi Mortgages: simple, smart, and so affordable.

FAQ

Is a home loan the same as a mortgage?

Yes. “Home loan” is an umbrella term that covers a wide variety of mortgages, home equity loans, and home refinances.

Why is a home loan called a mortgage?

“Mortgage” comes from the old French mort gage, meaning a death pledge — a morbid origin for the pledge you make to a lender to pay back the money you borrow.

Is a mortgage cheaper than a home loan?

Mortgages are a type of home loan. Your interest rate will depend on the type and size of your loan, your down payment, and your financial history, such as your credit score.


Photo credit: iStock/Brandon Ruckman

SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC). For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal. Equal Housing Lender.


SoFi Mortgages
Terms, conditions, and state restrictions apply. Not all products are available in all states. See SoFi.com/eligibility for more information.


*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.

¹FHA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by FHA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. FHA loans require an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP), which may be financed or paid at closing, in addition to monthly Mortgage Insurance Premiums (MIP). Maximum loan amounts vary by county. The minimum FHA mortgage down payment is 3.5% for those who qualify financially for a primary purchase. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.
Veterans, Service members, and members of the National Guard or Reserve may be eligible for a loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by VA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. VA loans typically require a one-time funding fee except as may be exempted by VA guidelines. The fee may be financed or paid at closing. The amount of the fee depends on the type of loan, the total amount of the loan, and, depending on loan type, prior use of VA eligibility and down payment amount. The VA funding fee is typically non-refundable. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.

²To obtain a home equity loan, SoFi Bank (NMLS #696891) may assist you obtaining a loan from Spring EQ (NMLS #1464945).

All loan terms, fees, and rates may vary based upon individual financial and personal circumstances and state.

You may discuss with your loan officer whether a SoFi Mortgage or a home equity loan from Spring EQ is appropriate. Please note that the SoFi member discount does not apply to Home Equity Loans or Lines of Credit brokered through SoFi. Terms and conditions will apply. Before you apply for a SoFi Mortgage, please note that not all products are offered in all states, and all loans are subject to eligibility restrictions and limitations, including requirements related to loan applicant’s credit, income, property, and loan amount. Minimum loan amount is $75,000. Lowest rates are reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. Products, rates, benefits, terms, and conditions are subject to change without notice. Learn more at SoFi.com/eligibility-criteria.

SoFi Mortgages originated through SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC), (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). Equal Housing Lender. SoFi Bank, N.A. is currently NOT able to accept applications for refinance loans in NY.

In the event SoFi serves as broker to Spring EQ for your loan, SoFi will be paid a fee.

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Top Tips for Selling Your Home Fast

Top Tips for Selling Your Home Fast

When you want to sell your house quickly, you need to get it right the first time around. Those with more time to leave their home on the market can enjoy a period of trial and error, but if you’re looking for a quick payout, it’s smart to have a plan, and even a checklist in place. Here are 10 tips that can help increase the appeal of your home, impress buyers and help get your property sold in record time.

1. Clean and declutter

One of the first and most fundamental steps to complete if you want to sell your house fast is to clean and declutter your home. This sounds simple, but it can make a huge difference to prospective buyers. If necessary, you may want to rent a storage unit so you can set aside any belongings that you don’t absolutely need for a showing. A tidy home looks bigger and more appealing, so investing some time and money in a deep clean and even a home staging can help to ensure buyers get a great first impression.

2. Pick a selling strategy

Different buyers will have different needs. For instance, a first-time homebuyer might be ready to purchase, but may not know exactly what they want until they see it. That’s why it’s smart to make sure your selling strategy targets your ideal buyer so you can sell your home quickly. Here are three strategies to consider:

Sell FSBO

Selling your home yourself can be a great way to sell a house fast. The “For Sale By Owner” approach may require a little extra work on your part, but it also lets you avoid agent or broker fees, meaning you can sell the home at a lower price and keep the same profits.

Hire an agent

Of course, going it alone isn’t for everyone. If you don’t fully understand the ins and outs of the market, need a little assistance, or would just prefer for a professional to handle the heavy lifting, hiring a real estate agent may be the better route for you. You may incur some additional fees but having a professional on board can help give you some piece of mind during what can be a very complex and stressful process. An agent can also help you time your sales strategy and planning process if you’re buying and selling a house at the same time.

Try the unconventional

There isn’t any one right way to sell a home. These days, some people harness the power of social media to try to sell a home quickly. Others allow potential buyers to spend a night to see if they fall in love with the home. Virtual tours that allow buyers to “walk through” without ever setting foot in the home are now the norm.

3. Price to sell

A mortgage loan is a major expense so it’s often at the forefront of your potential buyers’ minds. That’s why you may want to think carefully when setting a price point for your home. Setting your sale price higher than other properties in your neighborhood could keep your home on the market longer than you’d like. Choosing to set your sale price lower than those in your neighborhood can help set you apart from the pack and may help speed up the selling process.

Set a timeline for a price reduction

It’s perfectly fine to dream big, but it’s smart to have a plan in place if no one bites at your initial price. Setting a date by which you’ll reduce the price can help to generate renewed interest in your property. Even a small price reduction can entice buyers to give your home a second look.

Consider sales incentives

You may also want to consider other sales incentives. Perhaps the buyer wants a new fence installed or an AC unit replaced. New carpentry and modern appliances can be highly appealing for buyers. Also, offering to partially or fully cover closing costs is another tactic that can entice potential buyers.

4. Handle any quick repairs

Speaking of incentives, it’s wise to make sure you do repairs before buyers see the home. Many of those small things we overlook while living in a house can be a big deal to buyers. Repair scratched floors and damaged walls, tighten up that leaky faucet and pull out the touch up paint. All of these quick repairs can make a huge difference in selling your home quickly.

Recommended: What Are the Most Common Home Repair Costs?

5. Pack up and hire a stager

First thing’s first: Most buyers consider how their own belongings will fit in your home as they walk through, and getting some of your things out of the way can aid in that visualization. If you think your belongings are outdated or detract from the overall appeal of the home, you can research home staging tips or even consider hiring a stager who will know exactly how to make your home look its absolute best. A well-staged home can sell more quickly.

6. Create curb appeal

Thinking about what people see when they first arrive at your house is a smart move when it comes to selling your home quickly. The front lawn, the door, or even a driveway can influence a buyer’s overall impressions. Drive past your home and look at it from a buyer’s perspective to see where your eyes land first. Whatever catches your eye is probably worth investing some time and money into. Also, mowing the lawn and power washing the front of your home can help make it look more inviting.

Recommended: 5 Curb Appeal Ideas for Your House

7. Hire a professional photographer

Pictures, virtual walk-throughs and social media are huge in real estate these days. And professional photographers make it all much more appealing. If you have stunning professional photographs to show prospective buyers, you’re likely to be more competitive when it comes to getting those buyers into your house.

8. Write a great listing description

A listing price and photographs are helpful, but you also need a listing description. Real estate agents are often great at this, but if you need to do it on your own, you may want to start by considering your home’s best features. Also it’s smart to consider keywords that might help your home rank higher. Since you’re trying to sell a house fast, it’s perfectly fine to convey that in the listing. It might also attract buyers who want to buy quickly.

Where to post your listing

Where to list your home for sale often depends on how you’re selling it. If you are selling on your own, you can use sites like Zillow to list the house yourself. If you are working with an agent, however, they will probably prefer to list the house for you on the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Of course you can always use your personal social accounts, email, or other means to advertise regardless of whether you have an agent or not.

9. Time your sale right

Timing can play a huge role in how quickly your home sells. However, this can vary widely depending on where you’re located. You may want to start by researching when homes sell best in your area and aim to hit that time frame if you can.

10. Be flexible with showings

Within your ideal time frame, you’ll probably want to be as flexible as possible. Homebuyers can be busy, and if you can accommodate them, they’ll be more likely to view your home. If you can’t, they may look elsewhere.

Hold an open house

An open house is an excellent way to let people see your house. The best part about open houses is that they’re very flexible. People can come and go as they please on their own schedules. Of course, things like cleaning, making repairs and staging will be extra important prior to an open house. If you have an interested buyer but have scheduled an open house, it’s OK to run the open house anyway. Even a home in contingency can still fall through; it doesn’t hurt to have backup offers or other interested buyers in waiting.

The Takeaway

Whether pricing your home below market rate or just adding a fresh coat of paint, when it comes to selling your home quickly there really are no guarantees. Doing your research and knowing your market are the best ways to position yourself for a sale, and incorporating these tips can help speed up that process.

Looking for an affordable option for a home mortgage loan? SoFi can help: We offer low down payments (as little as 3% - 5%*) with our competitive and flexible home mortgage loans. Plus, applying is extra convenient: It's online, with access to one-on-one help.

SoFi Mortgages: simple, smart, and so affordable.


Photo credit: iStock/OlekStock

SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC). For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal. Equal Housing Lender.


SoFi Mortgages
Terms, conditions, and state restrictions apply. Not all products are available in all states. See SoFi.com/eligibility for more information.


*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.

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Should I Pay Off My Mortgage or Invest?

Should I Pay Off My Mortgage or Invest?

Wondering whether to pay off a mortgage or put the funds toward investments is a happy dilemma for some homeowners. The answer will depend on your financial situation, but let’s look at pros and cons of each along with a strategy that can allow you to combine the best of both worlds.

Paying Off a Mortgage vs Investing in the Market

Maybe you’ve socked away a nice savings. Or perhaps you inherited some money. If you’re trying to decide whether to put the money toward paying down your home mortgage loan or into the market, it helps to understand the mortgage payment process.

How Does a Mortgage Loan Work?

There are different mortgage types you likely considered when shopping for a mortgage, but in general, someone borrows money from a lender to buy a house at a certain interest rate and term length. As payments are regularly made (usually monthly), part of each payment goes toward the principal, lowering the balance. Early on in the life of your loan, the bulk of the payment will cover your interest charges. As the balance goes down, more of each payment typically goes toward the principal.

Recommended: Answers to Common Mortgage Questions

Components of a Mortgage Payment

You may hear the components of a mortgage payment summarized in an acronym: PITI. This stands for principal, interest, taxes, and insurance.

Principal

Initially, your principal is the amount of money you borrow. As you pay down your loan, the principal is the remaining (current) balance. When it comes to the mortgage loan payments themselves, the principal is the portion of the payment that goes toward the balance, reducing the amount. As noted above, as the balance goes down, more of your payment goes toward the principal and less to interest.

Interest

The interest is based on the interest rate charged on the loan’s principal, and these dollars go to the lender, serving as a key part of the cost of borrowing. As your loan balance goes down, less of your payment typically goes toward interest. Most mortgage loans have a fixed interest rate; others are variable, based on a certain financial index.

Move your cursor on the amortization chart of this mortgage calculator tool to see how principal and interest change over time.

Taxes and Insurance

A mortgage payment typically contains a month’s worth of property tax, which is based on the assessed value of the home and the tax rate where you live. A payment also may include a month’s worth of homeowners insurance and, if applicable, mortgage insurance that protects the lender in case of default.

Investment Gains vs Loan Interest Saved

At a high level, to determine which strategy can have the biggest positive financial impact, you can compare what investment gains you’ve had (or estimate future gains) and compare that to how much interest you would save when paying down your mortgage more quickly.

Pros and Cons of Paying Off Your Mortgage Early

Pros include the following:

•   You won’t have a mortgage payment anymore, which frees up money for other purposes: investing, paying for a child’s college expenses or wedding, and so forth.

•   You no longer have to worry about having the funds to make your payment. This can be especially helpful if unexpected expenses arise.

•   Typically, paying off your mortgage early will lower the amount of money that you pay in total interest — which means that you’ll pay less for your home overall.

•   Paying off a mortgage early gives you a guaranteed financial return, while there is always risk involved in putting money into the market.

•   If you need to borrow against the home in the future, none of the proceeds will be needed to pay off a current mortgage.

Cons include the following:

•   If the current stock market return rate is pretty good and your mortgage rate is low, paying off your mortgage early could have a lower rate of return than being in the market.

•   Your credit score could drop a bit because you’ll no longer have a mortgage in your mix of open types of credit.

•   Focusing on rapidly paying off a mortgage may cause someone to drain their emergency savings fund, something that’s not typically recommended.

•   Although uncommon now, some lenders charge a prepayment penalty for early mortgage payoffs. When this clause exists, it’s for the first three years of a mortgage. Check your mortgage note for specifics, or ask your lender or loan servicer.

•   When you no longer have a mortgage, you no longer qualify for the mortgage interest tax deduction.

Pros and Cons of Investing

Pros include the following:

•   Many times, when you buy shares of stock, you can get a good return on your investment in the long term. To get a sense of current returns, you can check the 10-year annualized return for the S&P 500.

•   If you’re in a workplace retirement plan, like a 401(k), your employer may match your contributions up to a certain amount.

•   Stocks are liquid assets, which means that you can buy and sell a portion of your portfolio at any time. You can’t really do that with a house. Plus, some stocks will provide you with dividends that you can reinvest or spend.

Cons include the following:

•   You could lose your entire investment in the stock market, including the initial investment. If you’re a common stockholder, you get paid last if a company defaults.

•   If you’re managing your own portfolio, you’ll need to invest time into investigating stocks, deciding what to buy and sell, and otherwise monitoring the stock market.

•   If you sell stocks at a profit, you’ll usually need to pay capital gains tax (although this can be offset if you also have some losses).

•   While investing, you’ll still need to make your mortgage payment (until the home is paid off).

•   Depending on your personality type, watching a stock that you own decline in value can be an emotional experience, and for some people, keeping tabs on their portfolio can be stressful. check that portfolio.

Evaluating Your Financial Situation

You may feel the urge to pay down your mortgage or make investments, but whether you should actually do so requires calculating two key figures: your net worth and your debt-to-income ratio (DTI). To determine your net worth, add up all of your assets (what you own) and subtract your liabilities (what you owe). Assets include your home’s value, vehicles, bank accounts, investments, and cash. Do not include your income. Liabilities are your mortgage, car, personal and student loans, credit card balances, and so forth. If you owe more than you own, the time may not be right to make a big investment — in either your home equity or the stock market — even if you are paying all your bills on time.

For the second metric — your DTI — add up your gross (pre-tax) monthly income as well as your monthly debt obligations, such as your mortgage, car payment, and other loan payments. Divide your total monthly debt by your total gross monthly income, and the resulting ratio (say, 0.30 or 30%) is your DTI. A lower DTI (say, under 30% or even 20%) indicates more cash flow to either put toward your mortgage or to invest.

Factors You Should Consider

Timing The earlier you can begin to apply extra payments to pay down your mortgage principal, the more you’ll benefit, because a lower principal will reduce interest over the life of the loan. That said, the earlier you can begin to invest, the longer you’ll have for your investments to build in value. Plus, because of compound interest, each dollar that you invest today will be worth more than a dollar that you would invest years from now.

Taxes Starting in 2018 and set to last through 2025, the federal government nearly doubled the amount of the standard deduction that taxpayers can claim. This means that far fewer people itemize their deductions, which in turn means that the mortgage interest deduction isn’t used by those taxpayers when they file their income taxes.

Home values If real estate values are dropping in your area, paying down your mortgage can help you from going underwater (owing more on the home than what it’s currently worth). Being underwater can make it more difficult to sell or refinance the home. Struggling homeowners can look for mortgage relief programs.

Recommended: Home Loan Help Center

Other Considerations

To this point, the post has largely focused on this question: Is it better to pay off a mortgage or invest? Let’s take a step back and look at issues to consider before doing either. First, do you have an emergency savings fund that could cover your monthly expenses for three to six months? If not, that’s a priority often recommended by experts.

Plus, if you have high-interest debt, such as credit card balances that you don’t pay off each month, it’s usually better to pay that off before either paying extra on your mortgage or investing.

Another strategy: You could consider refinancing your mortgage to a lower rate to lower your mortgage payment. Then, when you put extra money toward the balance, even more would go to the principal than when the interest rate was higher.

Deciding What’s Best for You

Pay off your house or invest? Perhaps the information provided has already allowed you to make a decision. However, there’s one more strategy to consider: doing both.

Best of Both Worlds: Funding Both at Once

Instead of simply considering two options, pay off mortgage or invest, another possibility meets in the middle: making additional contributions to your investments while also paying extra on your mortgage principal. This is most effective early on, but adds value through the life of the mortgage.

If the stock market becomes especially volatile or is significantly heading downward, you could focus on the mortgage paydown during that time period.

The Takeaway

Whether you choose to pay off a mortgage or invest depends on your financial situation and priorities. Each choice has pros and cons, but a best-of-both-worlds strategy is to do both.

Looking for an affordable option for a home mortgage loan? SoFi can help: We offer low down payments (as little as 3% - 5%*) with our competitive and flexible home mortgage loans. Plus, applying is extra convenient: It's online, with access to one-on-one help.

SoFi Mortgages: simple, smart, and so affordable.

FAQ

Is there any disadvantage to paying off your mortgage early?

If a mortgage note includes a prepayment penalty, this can cost you money. Other disadvantages are loss of the mortgage interest tax deduction and a potential drop in credit scores. Plus, it may be more advantageous to invest those dollars instead.

Should I pay off my mortgage or save money?

It depends, but you definitely want to make sure you save up three to six months of expenses in an emergency fund before you pay down your mortgage.

Is it better to pay off my mortgage or invest for retirement?

Ideally, you can do both. If that’s not financially possible right now, weigh the interest rate on your loan and whether or not you benefit from the mortgage interest deduction on your tax return vs. what you think you might be able to earn on investments in the market. This will help you make your decision.

Should I invest when I have a mortgage and other debts?

If “other debts” include high-interest debt, such as credit cards that aren’t paid off in full each month, it typically makes sense to prioritize the payoff of that debt over investing. If your employer offers a retirement plan with a company match, you might want to prioritize that investment in order to capture the match. And if you are paying your current debts comfortably, investing more widely could be the right move.


Photo credit: iStock/burcu saritas

SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC). For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal. Equal Housing Lender.


SoFi Mortgages
Terms, conditions, and state restrictions apply. Not all products are available in all states. See SoFi.com/eligibility for more information.


*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third-party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.

Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.

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How Much Income Is Needed for an $800,000 Mortgage?

If you earn at least $240,000 to $300,000 a year, you may be able to afford an $800,000 mortgage, assuming you have no significant other debts. But the exact amount you can qualify to borrow — even if you’re in that salary range or higher — will depend on several other variables, including your credit score.

Read on for a look at how much income may be needed for an $800,000 mortgage, how income fits into the overall mortgage equation, and how lenders typically decide how much mortgage a homebuyer can handle.

First-time homebuyers can
prequalify for a SoFi mortgage loan,
with as little as 3% down.


What Income Is Needed to Get an $800,000 Mortgage?

You might think the loan amount you’ll receive when you apply for a mortgage will be based mostly on your household income. But income is typically just one of several factors a lender will consider when deciding how much someone can borrow.

The home mortgage loan you can qualify for generally depends on how much the lender believes you can reliably pay back. You can expect the loan company to run your financials through a few different checks and calculations to come up with that number. Here are a few things lenders may look at:

Income

Lenders will ask about your salary to help determine if you can make the monthly payments on the amount you want to borrow. They’ll also want to know how reliable that income is — so you may be asked how long you’ve had your job (or your business if you’re self-employed). If you’re wondering if your income is high enough to afford an $800,000 loan, you may want to use an online home affordability calculator before you apply for a mortgage. Or you might try prequalifying with one or more lenders.

Creditworthiness

Lenders will also check your credit score and credit reports to ensure that you’re financially responsible and have a history of paying your bills on time.

Down Payment Amount

Contrary to what many people believe, a 20% down payment isn’t required to get a home loan. You may be able to put much less down, depending on the type of mortgage you get. Still, a larger down payment can indicate to lenders that you’re serious about your investment, and that could impact your chances of qualifying for the loan you want.

Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio

You can also expect lenders to compare your monthly gross income to your existing monthly debts (credit cards, student loans, car payments, etc.) to help assess if you’ll be able to manage all your payments. This is called your debt-to-income ratio, (DTI = monthly debts ÷ gross monthly income.)

What Is a Good Debt-to-Income Ratio?

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau advises homeowners to maintain a DTI ratio of 36% or less. And in general, that’s the number mortgage lenders are looking for, too. But some lenders may accept a DTI ratio of up to 43% — or even higher if the borrower can meet other criteria on certain types of loans.

What Other Factors Are Mortgage Lenders Looking For?

Here are a few formulas your lender — and you — may use to determine how much house you can afford on your income:

The 28/36 Rule

The 28/36 rule combines two factors that lenders typically look at to determine home affordability: income and debt. The first number sets a limit of 28% of gross income as a homebuyer’s maximum total mortgage payment, including principal, interest, taxes, and insurance. The second number limits the mortgage payment plus any other debts to no more than 36% of gross income.

For example: If your gross annual income is $240,000, that’s $20,000 per month. So with the 28/36 rule, you could aim for a monthly mortgage payment of about $5,000 — as long as your total monthly debt (your mortgage payment plus car payments, credit cards, etc.) isn’t more than $7,200.

The 35/45 Model

Another calculation lenders might look at is the 35/45 method, which recommends spending no more than 35% of your gross income on your mortgage and debt, and no more than 45% of your after-tax income on your mortgage and debt.

Let’s say your gross monthly income is $20,000 and your after-tax income is about $15,000. In this scenario, you might spend $6,750 per month on your debt payments and mortgage combined. This calculation offers a bit more breathing room with your mortgage payment — as long as you aren’t carrying a heavy debt load.

The 25% After-Tax Rule

This formula will give you a more conservative number to work with. With this calculation, you should spend no more than 25% of your after-tax income on your mortgage. So if you earn $280,000 and take home $17,733 a month after taxes, you might plan to spend $4,433 on your mortgage payments.

Keep in mind that these calculations can only give you a rough estimate of how much you can borrow. If you want to be more certain about the overall price tag and monthly payments you can afford, it may help to go through the mortgage preapproval process.

What Determines How Much House You Can Afford?

Here’s something else to consider when determining how much income is needed for an $800,000 mortgage: A house payment isn’t limited to just principal and interest. And the extra costs that may be tacked on every month can add up fast.

Some of the costs covered by a monthly loan payment can include:

Principal

Principal is the original amount borrowed to buy the home, minus the down payment. Each month, a portion of your payment will go toward paying down this amount.

Interest

Interest is the money you pay to the lender each month for giving you the loan. The interest rate you pay can be influenced by personal factors (such as the loan length you choose, your credit score, and your income) as well as general economic and market factors.

Homeowners Insurance

The cost of homeowners insurance also may be rolled into your monthly mortgage payment, with your lender paying the premium when it’s due.

Mortgage Insurance

Depending on the type of loan you get and the amount you put down on your home, you may be required to carry private mortgage insurance (PMI) or some other type of mortgage insurance policy. This insurance is designed to protect the mortgage lender if a borrower can’t make the agreed upon loan payments.

Property Taxes

A portion of your monthly mortgage payment may also go toward the property taxes you’ll need to pay your local government.

Recommended: Home Loan Help Center

$800,000 Mortgage Breakdown Examples

The monthly payment on a $800,000 mortgage can vary based on several factors, including the length of the loan (usually 15, 20, or 30 years) and the interest rate. A mortgage calculator can help you get an idea of what your payments might look like.

Here are some examples of how the payments for a $800,000 mortgage might break down. A mortgage calculator with taxes and insurance can show you how paying taxes and insurance changes the overall cost of your home.

30-Year Loan at 6% Fixed Interest Rate

Total Payment: $5,940
Principal and Interest: $4,796
Other Costs (estimated PMI, homeowners insurance, and property taxes): $1,144

15-Year Loan at 6% Fixed Interest Rate

Total Payment: $7,894
Principal and Interest: $6,751
Other Costs (estimated PMI, homeowners insurance, and property taxes): $1,143

30-Year Loan at 7% Fixed Interest Rate

Total Payment: $6,466
Principal and Interest: $5,322
Other Costs (estimated PMI, homeowners insurance, and property taxes): $1,144

15-Year Loan at 7% Fixed Interest Rate

Total Payment: $8,334
Principal and Interest: $7,191
Other Costs (estimated PMI, homeowners insurance, and property taxes): $1,143

Pros and Cons of an $800,000 Mortgage

According to Redfin, the median home sale price in the U.S. in May 2024 was $433,558. If you can qualify for a mortgage that’s around $800,000, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to find a pretty nice home. (A lot can depend on where you plan to buy, of course.)

The downside of borrowing $800,000 is that your payments could take a sizable slice out of your income every month. If you’re cutting it close and you experience an unexpected expense or temporary job loss, you may have trouble staying on track. You may want to speak with a financial advisor before committing to a loan of this size, to be sure it fits with your budget and your other goals.

Recommended: Best Affordable Places to Live in the U.S.

How Much Will You Need for a Down Payment?

A down payment is generally between 3% and 20% of a home’s purchase price. The amount you’ll need to put down can vary, though, depending on the type of mortgage loan you get.

Can You Buy a $800,000 Home with No Money Down?

You may be able to get a mortgage with no down payment if you can qualify for a government-backed VA home loan (from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs) or a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loan. These loans are insured by the federal government — which means the government will help pay back the lender if the borrower defaults on the loan.

Borrowers must meet specific requirements to qualify for both VA and USDA no-down-payment loans — and not all lenders offer these programs. But if you think you may be eligible, this could be an option that’s worth looking into.

Can You Buy a $800,000 Home with a Small Down Payment?

If you don’t meet the qualifications for a VA or USDA mortgage program, you might want to check out the requirements for an FHA loan (backed by the Federal Housing Administration) that allows you to make a down payment as low as 3.5%. There may be a limit on how much you can borrow with an FHA loan, depending on where you buy: In 2024, the limit may be as much as $1,149,825 in higher-cost areas. And in Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the 2024 limit is $1,724,725.

Some private lenders will accept as little as 3% down on a conventional mortgage — so don’t overlook that opportunity when you begin loan shopping.

Is an $800,000 Mortgage with No Down Payment a Good Idea?

There’s no question that coming up with a down payment can be an obstacle to homeownership — especially for first-time homebuyers — and skipping that step can be appealing. It may help you get into a home faster or allow you to hold onto your savings for renovations, an emergency fund, or other financial goals.

It’s important to remember, though, that without a down payment it can take longer to build up equity in your home. And though you won’t have to pay for mortgage insurance with a no-down-payment government-backed loan, you can expect to pay an upfront funding fee for a VA loan and an upfront and annual guarantee fee for a USDA mortgage. A mortgage professional can help you weigh the pros and cons of different types of mortgage loans and determine the best move for your circumstances.

What If You Can’t Afford an $800,000 Mortgage Even with No Down Payment?

Here are a few steps to consider if it turns out you can’t afford the payments on an $800,000 mortgage:

Look for a Less Expensive Home to Buy

If you can’t find a home that fits your budget in your favorite neighborhood or city, you may want to widen your search area. Or maybe you could trim down your list of “must-haves” to get a home you still like but can better afford.

Wait Until You’re Earning More

If you expect your salary to increase as you continue moving up the ladder, you may want to put homeownership on hold until you’re earning more.

Wait Until You Can Save More

You may also choose to press pause on your home purchase while you save up more money. Creating a budget and trimming other expenses could help you reach your savings goal. If you can come up with a bigger down payment, you may be able to borrow less and limit your monthly payments to a smaller amount.

Alternatives to Conventional Mortgage Loans

If you can’t qualify for a conventional mortgage loan, you may have some alternatives to consider. Here are a few potential options:

Homebuyer Assistance Programs

As mentioned above, some buyers can qualify for a federal, state, or local first-time homebuyer program that can help lower the down payment, closing costs, and other expenses. There might be limits on how much income you can earn to qualify, the type of home you can buy, or the home’s cost.

Rent-to-Own

Another option might be to enter into an agreement to rent-to-own a home. With this type of arrangement, you start out renting, but the landlord agrees to credit a portion of your monthly payment toward purchasing the home.

If you can afford the payments but don’t have enough for a down payment or can’t qualify for the mortgage you want, this may be a way to start working toward homeownership. But it’s important to understand the downsides of the deal — including that you might lose money if you change your mind about buying the home, or if the landlord has second thoughts about selling.

Owner Financing

With owner financing, the person who’s selling the home serves as the lender for all or part of the amount the buyer borrows to make the purchase. Just as with a rent-to-own home, there are risks to this kind of agreement. But it can make homeownership possible if a traditional loan isn’t available.

Mortgage Tips

No matter how much you plan to borrow, buying a home is a big step. Here are a few things you may want to do to prepare:

Check Your Credit

If you aren’t sure where your credit stands these days, you can request a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion). Checking your reports can give you an idea of what lenders might see when they evaluate your credit. If there are any errors, you can take steps to get them fixed. And if you see negative (but true) information in your reports, you can work on improving your credit habits. If you use a credit-score monitoring service, you may already know what your credit score is and if it needs a boost. Conventional lenders typically look for a minimum score of 620 to 640.

Work Out Your Housing Budget

Remember, your housing costs won’t be limited to principal and interest. It’s important to determine how much you might pay for insurance, taxes, homeowners association dues, general upkeep, and other expenses before you make the transition from renting to homeownership.

Find the Mortgage and Terms That Best Suit Your Needs

When you start mortgage shopping, you can decide whether you want a:

•   fixed vs. variable interest rate

•   conventional vs government-backed loan

•   shorter vs longer term loan

Remember that if interest rates drop significantly, if your financial situation changes dramatically, or if there are other loan parameters you wish to change down the line, a mortgage refinance may be an option.

Consider Getting Preapproved

Even if you’ve crunched the numbers yourself, going through the mortgage preapproval process with a lender may provide an even better estimate of how much you can afford to spend on a home. And having preapproval may give you an edge over other house hunters in a tight market.

The Takeaway

Getting a mortgage is just one of many steps in the homebuying process, but it’s an important one. Taking the time to do some research and/or ask for help from a professional could keep you from getting locked into a loan — or a home — that isn’t the right fit for you.

Looking for an affordable option for a home mortgage loan? SoFi can help: We offer low down payments (as little as 3% - 5%*) with our competitive and flexible home mortgage loans. Plus, applying is extra convenient: It's online, with access to one-on-one help.

SoFi Mortgages: simple, smart, and so affordable.

FAQ

How much would an $800,000 mortgage cost over 10 years?

Paying off a $800,000 mortgage over 10 years would cost a total of $1,090,060, assuming you have a 6.5% interest rate.

How much do you need to make to buy a $900,000 house?

If you earn $240,000 or more annually and/or if you can come up with a hefty down payment, you may be able to buy a home valued at $900,000, But you can expect lenders to look at other factors besides your income when deciding how much you can borrow, including your DTI ratio and credit score.

How do people afford $1.5 million homes?

An income of $500,000 or more a year could allow someone to qualify for a mortgage on a home valued at $1.5 million. Having two incomes contributing to the mortgage each month can help. But some people buy $1.5 million homes by putting down an extremely large down payment — for example after the sale of another residence. There are many factors that dictate what you can ultimately afford.


Photo credit: iStock/vladans

SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Bank, N.A., NMLS #696891 (Member FDIC). For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal. Equal Housing Lender.


SoFi Mortgages
Terms, conditions, and state restrictions apply. Not all products are available in all states. See SoFi.com/eligibility for more information.


*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

¹FHA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by FHA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. FHA loans require an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP), which may be financed or paid at closing, in addition to monthly Mortgage Insurance Premiums (MIP). Maximum loan amounts vary by county. The minimum FHA mortgage down payment is 3.5% for those who qualify financially for a primary purchase. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.
Veterans, Service members, and members of the National Guard or Reserve may be eligible for a loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by VA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. VA loans typically require a one-time funding fee except as may be exempted by VA guidelines. The fee may be financed or paid at closing. The amount of the fee depends on the type of loan, the total amount of the loan, and, depending on loan type, prior use of VA eligibility and down payment amount. The VA funding fee is typically non-refundable. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.
Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.

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