Just wanted to write a note about Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). If a person doesn't have enough for a good down payment, usually at least 20%, then the bank requires them to buy an insurance policy on the mortgage. A person can get into a house with less money down but it can be expensive and it only protects the lender. The rates vary but if it's 1% on a $200,000 home that's $2,000 per year. That adds up on a 30 year mortgage. If you have to get PMI keep in mind that you can have it removed when you've paid down the loan to where you owe less than 80%. Some lenders require you to keep the PMI for a certain number of years. They won't remove it for you, you have to request it in writing. Make sure you stay on top of these things. It can save you a lot of money in the long run.