Hello! This is Joe Harris with Morgan Financial and here is your “Joe Knows Mortgages MINUTE”. This week, we answer the question: If you have debt, can you still qualify for a loan?

Between car loans, student loans, and a few credit cards, it can be easy to feel like you may have too much debt to qualify for a mortgage. This is not necessarily true. The best way to figure out how much debt you can afford to carry is to calculate your debt-to-income ratio, or DTI. Calculating your DTI is simple. Simply add up your recurring monthly debt obligations such as a car payment, minimum credit card payments, student loan payment, and anything else that you are required to pay on a monthly basis that shows up on a credit report. Things like electric bill, water and phone do not count. Take your total and divide that by your gross monthly income, or your income before taxes. The resulting number is your DTI. Typically, lenders will want your debt to income ratios to be under 45%, however, there are some loan types that will go higher. A lender will take this number and factor in your potential mortgage payment.

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