Demystifying Your Mortgage Payment: What’s Included and What’s Not
Branch Leader
Larry Gonzales Branch Leader
Published on October 18, 2023

Demystifying Your Mortgage Payment: What’s Included and What’s Not

Unveiling the Hidden Costs of Homeownership: What’s Really in Your Mortgage Payment?

If you’re a first-time homebuyer or just curious about the components of your mortgage payment, you’re in the right place. Your mortgage payment isn’t just a single lump sum; it consists of various elements that are important to understand to manage your finances effectively. In this article, we’ll break down the key components of a typical mortgage payment, shedding light on what’s included and what’s not.

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Principal
The principal portion of your mortgage payment is a crucial part. It’s the amount that goes directly towards paying down the balance of your loan. Essentially, it’s your contribution to building equity in your home. Over time, as you make monthly payments, your principal balance decreases, and you own more of your home.

Interest
Interest is the cost of borrowing money from the bank. When you make a mortgage payment, a portion of it goes towards paying the interest on your loan. In the early years of your mortgage, a more significant portion of your payment goes to interest, but as you pay down the principal, the interest portion decreases.

Property Taxes
Property taxes are essential for homeowners. The amount you pay in property taxes is determined by the value of your home and the local tax rate. In some areas, property taxes are relatively low, while in others, they can be substantial. These taxes contribute to local services like schools, infrastructure, and public services.

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Homeowners Insurance
Homeowners insurance is a must to protect your investment. You have the flexibility to choose your insurance provider, but your lender might provide some recommendations. This insurance safeguards your home against damage, theft, or other unexpected events. Premiums can vary depending on factors like location and coverage.

Mortgage Insurance

If you have an FHA loan or a conventional loan with less than a 20% down payment, you’ll likely have mortgage insurance. This is an extra fee that acts as protection for the lender in case you default on your loan. The good news is that once you’ve built up enough equity in your home or reach a certain loan-to-value ratio, you can typically get rid of mortgage insurance.

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It’s important to note that your mortgage payment may also include homeowners association (HOA) fees and maintenance fees, but these are typically paid separately to your property manager. HOA fees support the upkeep of common areas and amenities in your community.

Understanding these elements of your mortgage payment is essential for financial planning and homeownership. Over time, as you pay down your loan and possibly eliminate mortgage insurance, your monthly payment may change. Additionally, as your home’s value appreciates, your property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums may also fluctuate.

By demystifying your mortgage payment, you can make informed decisions about your finances and work towards the goal of owning your home outright. Whether you’re a new homeowner or a seasoned pro, staying informed about the various components of your mortgage payment is a wise financial strategy.

If you have any more questions about homeownership or mortgages, feel free to reach out. We’re here to help you navigate the exciting journey of owning a home.

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Branch Leader
Larry Gonzales Branch Leader
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