How much you have to save per day to put a down payment on a house in 15 major US cities

caption
The median home price in San Francisco is $770,300.
source
Cliff/flickr

At some point in our lives, many of us will be buying a home.

It’s never too early to start saving.

Ideally, you’ll want to make a 20% down payment – anything lower and you will have to pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI), which is a safety net for the bank in case you fail to make your payments.

We looked at the median price of homes in 15 major metro areas from the National Association of Realtors, and calculated how much it would cost you to put a 20% down payment on a median-priced home.

We then determined how much you would have to save each day over the course of five, ten, or 15 years to reach that goal.

It’s less than you might think.

Our calculations assume this money will go into a savings account with negligible interest. While investing your savings might make them grow faster, experts generally advise against investing money you’ll need in the near future. Bear in mind, also, that accumulating enough for a down payment doesn’t necessarily mean you can afford a house – aside from closing and moving costs, you should be prepared to pay a mortgage, taxes, and maintenance on a monthly basis.

Here’s how much you need to set aside each day to put a 20% down payment on a house in 15 major metros:


Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land

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Houston, Texas.
source
Adam Baker/flickr

Median home price: $208,000

20% down payment: $41,600

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $22.80 / day

10 years: $11.40 / day

15 years: $7.60 / day


Chicago-Naperville-Joliet

caption
Chicago, Illinois.
source
MaxyM/Shutterstock

Median home price: $208,600

20% down payment: $41,720

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $22.90 / day

10 years: $11.45 / day

15 years: $7.60 / day


Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington

caption
Minneapolis, Minnesota.
source
photo.ua/Shutterstock

Median home price: $222,800

20% down payment: $44,560

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $24.40 / day

10 years: $12.20 / day

15 years: $8.15 / day


Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale

caption
Phoenix, Arizona.
source
welcomia/Shutterstock

Median home price: $223,100

20% down payment: $44,620

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $24.40 / day

10 years: $12.20 / day

15 years: $8.15 / day


Baltimore-Towson

caption
Baltimore, Maryland.
source
Jon Bilous/Shutterstock

Median home price: $229,200

20% down payment: $45,840

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $25.10 / day

10 years: $12.55 / day

15 years: $8.35 / day


Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville

caption
Sacramento, California.
source
Andrew Zarivny/Shutterstock

Median home price: $297,600

20% down payment: $59,520

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $32.60 / day

10 years: $16.30 / day

15 years: $10.85 / day


Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton

caption
Portland, Oregon.
source
Jeff Gunn/flickr

Median home price: $326,700

20% down payment: $65,340

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $35.80 / day

10 years: $17.90 / day

15 years: $11.95 / day


Denver-Aurora

caption
Denver, Colorado.
source
photo.ua/Shutterstock

Median home price: $369,000

20% down payment: $73,800

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $40.40 / day

10 years: $20.20 / day

15 years: $13.50 / day


Washington-Arlington-Alexandria

caption
Washington, DC..
source
Orhan Cam/Shutterstock

Median home price: $370,400

20% down payment: $74,080

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $40.60 / day

10 years: $20.30 / day

15 years: $13.55 / day


Boston-Cambridge-Quincy

caption
Boston, Massachusetts.
source
cdrin/Shutterstock

Median home price: $378,500

20% down payment: $75,700

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $41.50 / day

10 years: $20.75 / day

15 years: $13.80 / day


New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island

caption
New York, New York.
source
Luciano Mortula/Shutterstock

Median home price: $381,000

20% down payment: $76,200

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $41.80 / day

10 years: $20.90 / day

15 years: $13.90 / day


Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue

caption
Seattle, Washington.
source
Sorin Colac/Shutterstock

Median home price: $383,100

20% down payment: $76,620

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $42.00 / day

10 years: $21.00 / day

15 years: $14.00 / day


Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana

caption
Los Angeles, California.
source
View Apart/Shutterstock

Median home price: $458,900

20% down payment: $91,780

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $50.30 / day

10 years: $25.15 / day

15 years: $16.75 / day


San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos

caption
San Diego, California.
source
Shutterstock/Sebastien Burel

Median home price: $554,300

20% down payment: $110,860

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $60.70 / day

10 years: $30.35 / day

15 years: $20.25 / day


San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont

caption
San Francisco, California.
source
Ventdusud/Shutterstock

Median home price: $770,300

20% down payment: $154,060

How much you’d need to save for a down payment:

5 years: $84.40 / day

10 years: $42.20 / day

15 years: $28.15 / day