Conventional wisdom dictates that buyers must put down at least 20% down payment to be successful in buying a home. While it is true that some properties may require such a change from the start, 20% is hardly the do or die requirement that it once was. Many low and no down payment mortgages are available, and sellers (even in this hyper-competitive market) are often willing to accept more financing if the numbers are right. Here’s what you need to know about the current down payment landscape.
Average deposit statistics
The national average down payment was $70,612 in 2021, according to Optimal Blue, a division of Black Knight.
This national average can be misleading, however, as high-value properties can skew it upwards. Median data is often a better indicator. The median is the number in the middle of a data set and is considered more accurate because it does not give additional weight to either extreme.
- Median down payment on a home at the end of 2021: $26,000, depending ATTOM Data Solutions
- State with the highest median down payment: California ($103,000 as of March 2022, according to Optimal Blue)
- State with lowest median down payment: Mississippi ($6,982 as of March 2022, according to Optimal Blue)
- Differences by property type: Townhouse buyers paid the lowest average down payments in 2021, according to Optimal Blue, while co-op buyers paid the most on average.
Unsurprisingly, deposits have increased since the Great Recession and have exploded particularly rapidly in the pandemic seller market.
Down payment requirements and assistance programs
Many of the most common mortgages are available with little or no money for eligible borrowers:
|VA Mortgage||0 percent less|
|USDA Mortgage||0 percent less|
|FHA Mortgage||3.5% less with a credit score of 580 or higher, or 10% with a credit score of 500 or higher|
|Conventional mortgage (compliant)||3 percent|
Many states and municipalities also offer down payment assistance to first-time and low-income homebuyers. See Bankrate’s guide for more information.
Average deposit by state
In March 2022, there was a big gap in median installments by state. In California, the median was above $100,000, while it was below $10,000 in a handful of states.
|District of Colombia||$86,625|
|Caroline from the south||$26,000|
Average installment per generation
In general, the younger a buyer, the more comfortable they seem with a lower down payment.
|Buyers between the ages of 22 and 30||6%|
|Buyers between the ages of 31 and 40||ten%|
|Buyers aged 41 to 55||13%|
|Buyers between the ages of 56 and 65||18%|
|Buyers aged 66 to 74||23%|
|Buyers aged 75 to 95||21%|
Home Value vs Down Payment
Here’s a quick chart to help you estimate your down payment amount based on how much you plan to move in and the value of the property you’re buying:
At the end of the line
With house prices at record highs and fierce competition in the marketplace, homebuyers are rallying to put in as much cash as they can. Appalachia and parts of the South and Midwest continue to be the most affordable markets for down payments, while California remains the most expensive. Older buyers tend to invest more, likely because they have equity to tap into if they already own or have had more time to grow a nest egg.