5 Flexible Ways To Come Up With A Down Payment

To purchase a home you will need a down payment of at least 3.5% of the purchase price. Gone are the days of no down payment alternatives, down payment assistance, and seller offered programs to come up with the money needed to close escrow. Here’s five ways to come up with the down payment to seal the deal…

  1. Gift Money-a gift from family or documented close relationship. Giftor needs to provide a gift letter and paper trail the monies they are gifting for the benefit of the buyer. In other words, they’ll have to provide a bank account showing they had the ability to gift the money. In short, gift monies cannot be funds sitting at home in a safe.
  2. 401k/Retirement Loan-typically borrowed funds for a down payment are a no-go, but the exception is a 401(k) or equivalent retirement account (or current home equity line). Borrowing money from your 401(k) for your down payment is acceptable for obtaining a loan to buy a home.*Note depending on the terms of your loan, this could be counted as a liability and factored into your debt to income ratio.
  3. Sale of A Good-You can sell your recreational vehicle or toy and use the net proceeds from the transaction as your down payment. For example let’s say you decide to sell your boat for $10,000. You’ll need to provide the full bill of sale as well as the bank statement depositing those funds, matching the bill of sale dollars- to your mortgage company. Same goes for any other recreational vehicle or other personal item. The key is as long as it’s plausible and passes the litmus test and you can paper trail the movement of money, you should have no issues using those monies for the home purchase.
  4. Trust Funds, Settlement Awards, etc.-if you come into a chunk of change via an inheritance, settlement, lottery winning, trust fund disbursement, family buyout, even a gambling victory, all of these monies can be used for the down payment as long as the sourcing of the monies is fully documented and explained from A to Z. Matching of the amounts of monies used to the original deposits will be needed when it comes time to approve the mortgage.
  5. Line of Credit/Personal Loan-where a down payment lacks, enter strength in income. You can take out a line of credit or a personal loan, deposit the full funds into your bank account and after two months (two month seasoning will be needed), the funds will be eligible for use in the house sale.

While a down payment is needed to purchase in the current real estate market, a prudent home buyer would also have plans for having available funds for closing costs. The same out of the box strategies listed above can also be used to procure these closing costs.

Closing costs on average run 3% of the purchase price. So total funds to close, would be sum 3% of purchase price +3.5% down. Do your homework, if you don’t have a down payment for a house, or your down payment is coming from more than one source, make sure you talk to a lender. A qualified mortgage company can help you navigate the best way to properly support and document your monies with underwriting. Doing this on the front end will save a tremendous amount of time, creating and gathering unnecessary paperwork.

If you would like to discuss the opportunity to buy a home and come up with the cash needed to seal the deal, contact Scott.Sheldon@nafinc.com. You can also begin your potential purchase by getting a free rate and payment and closing cost quote now!



Posted in:


Why you should wait for your credit to improve before applying for a mortgage

Why you should wait for your credit to improve before applying for a mortgage

In the current consumer landscape, securing approval for a mortgage is a significant challenge. It’s…

Here's a strategy to buy a home and set up a future refinance

Here’s a strategy to buy a home and set up a future refinance

For families looking to purchase a home, good news has arrived interest rates are slowly…

Here’s how to buy a house even if you think your income may not qualify

Here’s how to buy a house even if you think your income may not qualify

If you’re looking to get prequalified to buy a home, one of the main elements,…

fha rule mortgage loan

This FHA lender rule could be problematic for your mortgage

If you’re applying for a residential mortgage loan and you’re looking at an FHA loan…

View More from The Mortgage Files:


  1. […] will not allow that income to count directly toward your borrowing power. However, it can go toward down payment funds in a savings account that can then be used to help acquire the […]

  2. […] short sale is affecting your ability buy a home, focus on improving your credit, increasing your down payment and paying off debt-all of which will significantly bolster your qualifying ability when the clock […]

  3. […] over the term of the loan, that’s a no brainer benefit. Alternatively, maybe it might mean putting more down on the house in freeing up a lower mortgage payment to focus on paying off the consumer […]

begin your mortgage journey with sonoma county mortgages

Let us make your mortgage experience easy. Trust our expertise to get you your best mortgage rate. Click below to start turning your home dreams into reality today!