To purchase a home, many lenders will require a minimum down payment to ensure that the buyer has an incentive to continue paying for the house. Usually, a down payment of at least 20 percent is required to purchase a home. However, some lenders only require that you put as little as 3.5 percent down to purchase the home. There are some risks to only putting a small amount down when you close on a home. Some lenders will require that you purchase mortgage insurance to lower the risk of a borrower defaulting on a large loan. This can actually make your monthly payment higher than you want it to be. The good news is that these loans are generally insured by the government and only require a minimal credit score as well as proof of income for borrowers to qualify.