Ratio of Debt-to-Income
Lenders use a ratio called "debt to income" to determine the most you can pay monthly after your other recurring debts are paid.
About your qualifying ratio
For the most part, conventional loans need a qualifying ratio of 28/36. FHA loans are a little less restrictive, requiring a 29/41 ratio.
The first number in a qualifying ratio is the maximum percentage of your gross monthly income that can go to housing (this includes principal and interest, PMI, homeowner's insurance, property tax, and homeowners' association dues).
The second number is the maximum percentage of your gross monthly income that can be applied to housing expenses and recurring debt together. Recurring debt includes auto payments, child support and monthly credit card payments.
- Gross monthly income of $3,500 x .28 = $980 can be applied to housing
- Gross monthly income of $3,500 x .36 = $1,260 can be applied to recurring debt plus housing expenses
With a 29/41 (FHA) qualifying ratio
- Gross monthly income of $3,500 x .29 = $1,015 can be applied to housing
- Gross monthly income of $3,500 x .41 = $1,435 can be applied to recurring debt plus housing expenses
If you'd like to run your own numbers, feel free to use our Mortgage Loan Qualification Calculator.
Don't forget these are only guidelines. We will be happy to pre-qualify you to help you figure out how large a mortgage loan you can afford.