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This is what you need to earn to qualify for these bonds

It helps to have a target in mind when looking to purchase a home. We provide a guide to what you should earn to qualify, depending on the bond amount.

How Much Earn to Qualify for Bond

Article summary

  • As a rule of thumb, you should set aside 30% of your income for monthly bond repayments.
  • We provide a range of price brackets and what you should earn to qualify for them.
  • Bear in mind that if your income ranges from R3 501 to R22 000, you can qualify for a government subsidy in the form of First Home Finance (formerly known as FLISP).

Purchasing a home is an exciting step, and is within reach even for low-income earners in South Africa.

To help you take this important step, we provide a guide to budgeting for the home you have in mind.

Note: Your first step is determining what home loan you qualify for. Our Bond Calculator is the tool you need to do this.

Simply enter your income, and total monthly expenses, and the calculator will provide an estimate of what you can afford, giving you a solid target for your house hunt.

Estimate what you need to earn

As a rule of thumb, you should set aside 30% of your gross income for home loan repayments.

With that in mind, here are some common bond price brackets and what you’d need to earn to afford them, assuming a 20-year bond, the current interest rate of 11.75, and before factoring in the deposit.

Bond amount Monthly repayment Required earnings
R500 000 R5 419 R18 000 per month
R750 000 R8 128 R27 093 per month
R1 000 000 R10 837 R34 000 per month
R1 500 000 R16 256 R54 000 per month
R2 000 000 R21 674 R72 000 per month


Monthly repayments were calculated using our Bond Repayment Calculator, another invaluable tool for helping you budget.

What about the deposit?

Of course, in most cases, the home loan will require a deposit (unless you obtain a 100% home loan), which is usually 10% of the purchase price.

The deposit will reduce your monthly repayments and thus your required earnings. Of course, the issue is your monthly salary doesn’t come into play when determining whether you can afford the deposit, but rather how much you can save over a period of time.

Consider drawing up a monthly budget so you can set aside a portion of your salary each month for a deposit. This will reduce the amount you pay on the bond in the long run.

Average property price and required earnings by city

Metro Average property price Required earnings
City of Cape Town, Western Cape R1 575 214 R56 903 per month
City of Johannesburg, Gauteng R1 217 853 R43 993 per month
City of Tshwane, Pretoria R988 184 R35 696 per month
eThekwini, Durban, KwaZulu Natal R963 051 R34 790 per month
Ekurhulenia, Gauteng R837 542 R30 256 per month
Buffalo City, Eastern Cape R679 591 R24 550 per month
Nelson Mandela Bay, Eastern Cape R611 955 R22 106 per month
Mangaung, Bloemfontein, Free State R526 314 R19 013 per month

First Home Finance: The option for low earners

If your income ranges from R3 501 to R22 000, you can qualify for First Home Finance (formerly known as FLISP), a government subsidy for first-time homebuyers.

The programme provides a subsidy (ranging from R38 878 to R169 264) which you can pay toward your bond. This improves your chances of home loan qualification and subsidises your monthly earnings.

Here are the full qualification criteria for First Home Finance:

  • Your income must range from R3 501 to R22 000 per month.
  • You must be a South African citizen with permanent residency in South Africa.
  • You must not have received a government housing subsidy before.
  • You must be married or cohabiting OR single with financial dependents.
  • You must be over 18 years old.
  • You must not have owned a fixed residential property before.

Get prequalified to determine what you can afford

Getting prequalified with ooba Home Loans will give you a solid idea of what you can afford, as well as provide the bank with proof that you can afford the bond you’re applying for. It’s easier to determine what you need to afford when you have this information.

You can get prequalified by contacting an expert at ooba Home Loans or by using our free, online prequalification tool, the Bond Indicator.

Get prequalified for a home loan today

DIY with our online prequalification tool, or speak to an expert.


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