The down payment can be one of the biggest obstacles to homeownership. Even in a very modestly priced market, a traditional 20 percent down payment easily amounts to tens of thousands of dollars. Add the various closing costs and a typical home shopper can face a financial goal that is unrealistic at best.

If you’ve got limited cash on hand for a down payment but feel otherwise ready to take on the responsibilities of homeownership, you may only need to find the right program to meet your needs rather than give up on your goal.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Making a Down Payment?

Before you jump into a low or zero down mortgage, carefully consider the possible advantages and disadvantages first. If you are able to make even a small down payment, you will probably save money in the long run.

A down payment offers several advantages, including lower borrowing costs. For one thing, you’ll save on interest charges simply by borrowing less money. The lower the down payment, the higher the risk you are to the lender. Because of this, most lenders offer better rates to borrowers who make more sizeable down payments. Even a 1 percent reduction in your interest rate can net you tens of thousands of dollars in interest savings over the life of the loan.

[Read more]