prequalify for mortgage
If you have finally found your dream home and you haven’t pre-qualified for a loan yet in order to see how much you can afford when it comes to buying your home, you can work backwards instead. By plugging in certain information, such as the cost of the home, how much the interest rate on the loan is likely to be, and how much you will pay as a down payment, you can determine how much your income will need to be to qualify for the mortgage loan on the home you love.
For example, if the home you are looking at costs $300,000.00 and you plan to put $30,000.00 down on a 30 year loan with a 5.000% interest rate, your total payment on the principal and interest will be $1,449.42. If your annual property taxes are $3,000.00 and your annual insurance is $1,500.00, that will bring your total monthly payment to $1,936.92. With a monthly payment of this amount, your total gross monthly income will need to be at least $6,917.57 in order to qualify for the loan.
Estimated front and back ratios helps you to limit your housing and necessary living spending.
Front ratio is a percentage of your gross income that you can spend on all housing related expenses, including property taxes and insurance. Back ratio is a percentage of your gross income that you can spend on your housing expenses plus cost of shelter: food, clothes, gas, etc.
Front / back ratios with values of 28-33 / 36-42 considered conservative these days, values bigger than 35 / 45 called aggressive and not recommended for use.
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Can You Borrow with Your Current Income?
Though you may feel that your finances are ready for a new home, the bank may not feel the same way. Mortgage lenders use a complex set of criteria to determine whether you qualify for a home loan and how much you qualify for, including your income, the price of the home, and your other debts.
The pre-qualification process can provide you with a pretty good idea of how much home lenders think you can afford given your current salary, but you can also come up with some figures on your own by learning the criteria that lenders use to evaluate you.
Home Loan Qualification
Your income is, of course, an important criteria in determining whether or not you can afford the mortgage you want. However, what’s even more important is how much income you make in proportion to how much the home costs and in proportion to how much debt you have.
Front-End Ratio vs Back-End Ratio
Two criteria that mortgage lenders look at to understand how much you can afford are the housing expense ratio, known as the front-end ratio, and the total debt-to-income ratio, known as the back-end ratio.
The housing expense, or front-end, ratio is determined by the amount of your gross income used to pay your monthly mortgage payment. Most lenders do not want your monthly mortgage payment to exceed 28 percent of your gross monthly income. The monthly mortgage payment includes principle, interest, property taxes, homeowner’s insurance and any other fees that must be included. These costs are commonly referred to as PITI, which is derived from: pincipal, interest, tax insurance.
FER = PITI / monthly pre-tax salary; or
FER = PITI / (annual pre-tax salary / 12)
The front-end ratio is also called the housing-expense ratio. This looks at how much you make in proportion to how much the mortgage will cost you each month, including extras like private mortgage insurance, homeowners insurance and property taxes. Typically, lenders cap the mortgage at 28 percent of your monthly income.
To determine your front-end ratio, multiply your annual income by 0.28, then divide that total by 12 for your maximum monthly mortgage payment.
Some loan programs place more emphasis on the back-end ratio than the front-end ratio. In the next section we will display a table of widely used loan programs, along with the limits associated with each.
The debt-to-income, or back-end, ratio, analyzes how much of your gross income must go toward debt payments, including your mortgage, credit cards, car loans student loans, medical expenses, child support, alimony and other obligations. Most lenders do not want your total debts, including your mortgage, to be more than 36 percent of your gross monthly income.
Determining your monthly mortgage payment based on your other debts is a bit more complicated. Multiply your annual salary by 0.36 percent, then divide the total by 12. This is the maximum amount you can pay toward debts each month. Subtract your other debts including your car payment, your student loan payment and other debt payments from this amount to determine the maximum amount you can spend on your monthly mortgage payment.
Once you have the two numbers and a sense of the interest rate you may qualify for, you can use a mortgage calculator to determine the cost of the home that you can afford.
FER = (PITI + all other monthly debt payments) / monthly pre-tax salary; or
FER = (PITI + all other monthly debt payments) / (annual pre-tax salary / 12)
The above calculator gives you all the answers you need in one stop determining your front- and back-end ratios and compares it to the interest rate on the loan and the length of the loan. You can also enter information about the annual taxes and insurance on the home. You’ll get a clear picture of just how much home you can afford in moments, with the results e-mailed to you in a plain-English and easy-to-understand format. Just enter your e-mail and you can even have a copy of your information saved for later available to show lenders other real estate professionals.