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Buying a House on a 40K Salary

written by: Lashan Clarke•edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom•updated: 7/29/2010

One of the questions that may arise when someone is looking to buy a home is, “Can 40K salary buy a house?" There is no straightforward answer to this question as it will depend on where the homeowner lives and where they are planning to buy a new home.

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    Is a 40K Salary Enough?

    One of the questions that may arise when someone is looking to buy a home is, “Can 40K salary buy a house?" Here, we will attempt to answer this question by looking at some of the facts which influence the decision.

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    It has always been said that location is one of the most important factors when buying a home, and this is particularly true when the person has a 40K salary. Location does not only refer to what part of the city or town to buy in, but also it refers to what state the potential homeowner would like to live in.

    If someone does not mind living a distance away from the main city, then it may be possible to qualify for a house on this salary. It would be expected that home closer to the city or directly within the limits of the city would be more expensive. So when looking for a home, it might be a good idea to look for one in the less populated areas.

    Someone thinking, "Can 40K salary buy a house," will definitely have to consider what state they live in. If they would not mind moving to another neighboring state with more affordable housing, then it is possible to afford housing at this salary. For example, it may be difficult to find a house in California with a 40K salary, but moving to another state might help to find an affordable property to purchase.

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    It is expected that most loan companies will offer a loan that is at least three times the amount of there salary. If someone does not have any savings, they may expect to receive a loan between $100,000 to $120,000. However, this figure will vary based on the amount of debts the person already has.

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    Fixer-Upper, Foreclosures or Auctions

    If someone is keen to own a house, they might consider purchasing a home that needs to be repaired or finding homes that are on foreclosure. Usually the home in need of repair will see for less than a home in the same category and this might be within your budget. A foreclosed home might also be something to consider as the mortgage loan on the house could be taken over if the house has foreclosed. One benefit to buying a foreclosed home is that the interest rate might be at a lower level than purchasing a regular home.

    This may also be in the $100,000 price range if the previous owners were paying off the loan for a while, but were unable to continue. House auctions do not occur often, but it might be another idea for someone to discover if 40K salary can buy a house.

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    Bankrate, Inc. "How much house you can buy." 2010. Available: