How to Buy a House with Low Income

Acquiring a home can pose difficulties for many, yet these challenges are often more acute for those on a lower income, as it may be harder to meet mortgage qualifications or save for a down payment. In this piece, we’ll target the most important choices to buy a house with low income that will put you on the path to homeownership.

Photo of a beautiful newly built home - How to Buy a House with Low Income
It’s not impossible to buy a house with low income if you make wise choices. | Photo by Ronnie George

4 Steps to Buy a House with Low Income

If you are a low-income earners but today’s standards, do not give up. Instead, take advantage of these four important steps that follow.

1. Select Your Real Estate Agent Wisely

Ensure your chosen real estate agent is well-versed in the local real estate market and knowledgeable about home buying programs at both the local and national levels for those with lower incomes.

Conduct online research on agents you’re contemplating, looking into Yelp reviews, searching them on Google, and examining their LinkedIn profiles and other professional websites to understand their professional history.

Utilizing word of mouth is also highly effective. Seek out recommendations from homeowners who have previously engaged with local agents. Interviewing potential agents can also help you gauge whether their personality, strategy, and offered services are compatible with your needs.

2. Get Pre-approved

Amidst the current fierce competition in the housing market, ensuring you have a mortgage pre-approval can significantly sway sellers to consider your proposal more earnestly. Pre-approval signifies that a financial institution has preliminarily consented to back your home acquisition, thus bolstering a seller’s trust in the likelihood of your financing being sanctioned subsequent to an offer.

Additionally, securing pre-approval is crucial as it defines your budget for house hunting. Lenders will generally set a maximum loan amount they’re willing to provide, which helps narrow your search to properties that fit within your financial means. If you’re a low-income earner, you may also want to explore down payment assistance programs, which can provide additional support in making homeownership more accessible.​​​​​​​

3. Think About Having Someone Co-sign Your Loan

Having a friend or family member back your loan application as a guarantor could expedite its approval. Typically, this person is one you share a close relationship with. If your credit history leaves something to be desired, you’re balancing a debt load that’s disproportionate to your income, you haven’t had the opportunity to build a robust credit profile, or your earnings aren’t consistently meeting the mark, bringing a guarantor into the equation should be given serious thought.

Recognize the gravity of such a request. A guarantor must enter into this arrangement with eyes wide open, fully prepared to shoulder the financial obligation should you falter in your repayments.

Additionally, the responsibility of being a guarantor comes with its own set of implications for their financial health, mirroring the impact on yours. Their participation in securing the financing means undergoing a financial review by the lender, akin to the scrutiny applied to your own finances.

4. Enhance Your Application

You might find it unexpected, but income isn’t the most critical factor in loan underwriting. Strengthening your loan application can be achieved by adding compensating factors like a history of minimal debt usage, evidence of consistent savings, purchasing an energy-efficient property, or employment in a promising career field.

It’s not uncommon for individuals with low to moderate incomes to secure mortgages, particularly if they boast strong credit scores, possess a significant down payment, and maintain a healthy bank balance.


Home ownership is achievable even without a significant down payment or a perfect credit score. There is an abundance of loan programs available for those with lower incomes. Discover which mortgage options are accessible to you and check if any grants and services are available to aid you. With the proper resources at your disposal, homeownership is within your grasp.

Tre Pryor, Realtor

Tre Pryor is the leading real estate expert in the city of Louisville. He is a multi-million dollar producer and consistently ranks in the top 1% of Louisville Realtors for homes sold. Tre Pryor has the highest possible rating—5.0 stars on Google—by his clients and is routinely interviewed by the local NBC news. Tre Pryor is a member of the RE/MAX Hall of Fame.