At a Glance

Technically, you can use a credit card to buy a house (in some cases). However, it’s probably not a good idea.

Even though you can buy a tiny home or fixer upper for $30,000 or less in some areas, you must have a high enough credit limit and be prepared for the complexity and costliness of using your card for the purchase.

In this article, you’ll learn:

Can you buy a house with a credit card?

Buying a house with a credit card is technically possible, but it’s not as easy as just swiping your card, and overall, it’s not recommended.

First, you must have a high enough credit limit to purchase a home. According to Experian, the median credit limit across credit cards for millennials is just over $20,000. It’s unlikely you’ll find a house for less than that, unless you’re buying a tiny home, fixer upper, or mobile home.

Even if you have a high enough credit limit, you’ll also need a positive financial history and strong credit score.

Another note is that many sellers, representatives, and title companies will not accept credit cards as payment, and there are even state laws mandating the use of a certified check in the sale transaction. Because of this, you’d need to take a cash advance on your credit card, use those funds to purchase a certified check at your bank, and then use that at the sale.

If considering a cash advance, remember:

  • You’ll likely be charged a withdrawal fee, up to 5%. That means if you make a $10,000 withdrawal, you’ll be charged $500 just to borrow the cash.
  • Cash advance limits are smaller than your credit limit. A good benchmark is 30%. For example, if your credit limit is $30,000, you may only be able to take out a $10,000 cash advance.
  • Interest charges begin as soon as you take out a cash advance.
  • Most issuers charge a higher interest rate for cash advances than they do for purchases.

Finally, sellers typically want confirmation you have the ability to pay before they accept your offer, which is called “proof of funds.” This means you’d have to borrow money from your credit card early so that it’s seen sitting in your account, but taking out a cash advance before the sale can mean accrual of significant interest.

Pros and cons of buying a home with a credit card

Pros Cons
  • Shorter repayment timeline (compared to a traditional mortgage)
  • Increased credit utilization
  • Less documentation and paperwork needed
  • Negative impact to credit score
  • Withdraw the advance and purchase the certified check quickly
  • Fees
  • Avoid mortgage application fees and closing costs
  • High interest charges
  • Often not accepted as a payment option
  • High debt-to-income ratio
  • Fewer lending options
  • Maxed out credit card

Should you use credit cards to buy a house?

Even though you technically can, it’s not typically recommended to use a credit card (or multiple) to buy a house. For the average consumer, making a home purchase on a credit card can be complicated and costly, and it will be difficult to find a seller who is willing to accept a credit card as payment.

Instead, consider other financing options or wait to purchase a home until you’re more financially stable and prepared.

If you do decide to use your credit card, you’ll have to take out the cash advance just to make an offer, borrowing money before you even place the offer or get the home and accruing interest. If your credit limit is high enough you may be able to borrow enough to make the purchase, but you must be prepared for the fees and interest charges as well.

Other ways to finance your home buying

Other types of financing for a house will likely be better for you than using a credit card:

1. Traditional mortgage: Standard mortgages have fixed, lower interest rates, knowledgeable and trustworthy lenders, and typically, no prepayment penalties. They are easier to get and use for the purchase of a home and considered the best option for buyers.

2. Personal loan: This isn’t always recommended, but if the home you’re considering is cheaper, you may want to apply for a personal loan. Fixed interest rates and monthly payments, lower interest with a high credit score, and shorter repayment terms may mean you’ll owe less over time.

3. Home assistance loans: There are different types of loan programs depending on where you live that can make purchasing a home easier and more affordable. For example, consider local homebuying programs offered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

4. Grants: Some cities may offer grants for first-time homebuyers, low income homebuyers, or those fixing up a historical property.


This depends on the type of mortgage you’re applying for or method of purchase. For example, you may be able to get an FHA loan with a score as low as 500. Conventional home loans typically require a minimum score of 620 or 640. Know that if you have a lower score, you may be required to put down a greater down payment.

You can’t use an actual credit card for a down payment. Instead, like the home purchase, you’ll have to take out a cash advance. This can be costly in the long-term and isn’t typically recommended.

Most mortgage lenders will not accept a personal loan as a down payment for a house. Even if you find a lender that doesn’t forbid it, doing so still likely won’t be an option. Plus, having a personal loan increases your debt-to-income ratio and can lower your credit score, which doesn’t look great to mortgage lenders.

If you’re applying for a home mortgage to buy a house, you don’t want to apply for a credit card right beforehand. Wait at least three months after you apply for a new credit card to apply for a mortgage, though ideally you should wait six months. This can give your credit score time to rebound from the inquiry and allow you to show positive payment history.