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How Much House Can I Afford in Seattle? Updated for 2021

October 30, 2017
Last updated:
March 2, 2021
How Much House Can I Afford in Seattle

Thinking of buying a home in Seattle some time this year or next? How much can you actually afford in a home purchase?

How much house can I afford to buy in Seattle in 2021, when using a mortgage loan?

In This Article

With just one month into the year 2021, this is a common question among home buyers planning to enter the market soon. Here’s an updated look at housing market conditions and other factors that will help you answer this important question: How much house can you afford in Seattle?

Seattle Home Price Trends as of Winter 2021

It’s an understatement to say that home prices in Seattle have been on the rise over the past few years. They’re certainly some of the highest home prices in the entire state, and even the entire country.

As of the end of January 2021, prices of homes in Seattle have increased from January 2020. The market has been hot over the past 12 months, and prices are higher today than they were at the same time last year.

The median value of a home in Seattle is still a staggering $804,504, which is more than three times the national average. And this will have a direct influence on how much house you can afford in Seattle if you buy in 2021.

Today’s Seattle Mortgage Rates

Related: Home Buyer Closing Costs in Washington State

You Could Afford More House in a Surrounding Suburb

Home buyers who are willing to expand their searches to include surrounding areas could afford to buy more home. And this becomes obvious when you look at the median home values presented above.

The median price for Seattle property is above $800,000. But when you look at nearby neighborhoods, the prices are less than half. For instance, prices in nearby Kent, Tacoma, and Federal Way are currently at $489,111, $395,946, and $455,303, respectively (as of January 2021). Keep this in mind when trying to determine how much house you can afford in Seattle. Broadening your search could get you more house.

Budget First, House Hunting Second

If you’re going to use a mortgage loan to buy a house in Seattle, it’s a good idea to put a basic budget on paper first. This will help you narrow your housing search to the kinds of properties you can actually afford, based on your monthly housing budget.

It doesn’t have to be anything complex. You just want to know how much money you have leftover each month after covering all of your recurring debts and expenses. That’s the starting point for determining your housing budget.

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage loan can also help you determine how much house you can afford to buy in Seattle. And this is an area where we can assist you. We can review your current financial situation — including income and debts — to determine how much of a loan you might be able to take on.

Understanding Debt-to-Income Ratios

Banks and mortgage companies use something known as the debt-to-income ratio (DTI) to determine how much a person can borrow for a home loan. This is another factor that can affect how much of a house you’re able to buy in Seattle during 2021.

As the name suggests, a debt-to-income ratio is simply a comparison between the amount of money you spend each month on your recurring debts and the amount you earn in the form of income. DTI limits can vary from one mortgage loan program to the next. Generally speaking, however, most home loans have a limit somewhere around 45% to 50% for the total debt-to-income ratio. But it varies.

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Need a Mortgage Loan?

Will you need mortgage financing to buy a home in Seattle? We can help. Sammamish Mortgage has been serving buyers across the Pacific Northwest since 1992 including WA, OR, CO & ID. We offer a wide variety of mortgage programs and products with flexible qualification criteria. Please contact us today with any financing-related questions you have.

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