The Difference Between Gross Income and Net Income

Income is usually broken down into two categories.

Net and gross income.

This article looks to identify the two types of income and how they are used.

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Gross Income for a Loan

Whether you’re applying for a mortgage loan or auto loan, creditors always ask for your gross income in the loan application. However, when it comes to lending, there are only certain types of income that qualify.

Types of Qualify Income for a Loan

  • Salary and hourly wages paid  by your employer
  • Part-time employment
  • Tips that are reported and taxable
  • Earned commissions
  • Self-employment income minus business expenses
  • Social security
  • Child support
  • Alimony
  • Investment income
  • Rental income

Debt-to-Income Ratio

Your gross income is used by a mortgage lender to calculate your debt-to-income ratio (DTI ratio). Your DTI ratio determines how much of a loan you qualify for.

Front-end DTI ratio – Your debt-to-income ratio before adding your mortgage payment. No higher than 28%

Back-end DTI ratio – Your DTI ratio after factoring in your mortgage payment. No higher than 36%

Use our home affordability calculator to see how much you can afford.

Gross Income on Your Tax Return

For tax purposes, all income earned during the year qualifies as gross income. When calculating your gross income for filing your tax return, you need to deduct things like business expenses and alimony.

Adjusted Gross Income

Your adjusted gross income (AGI) is your total income after deductions. Your adjusted gross income is your taxable income for a calendar year.

Gross Income Deductions

  • Business expenses (gas, supplies, materials)
  • School tuition
  • Student loan interest
  • Alimony
  • Up to half the self-employment tax

What is Net Income?

Net income is your income after Federal taxes, social security, medicare, and pre-tax benefits have been deducted. Pre-tax benefits are items such as health insurance, dental, 401k, and IRA contributions.

What is Annual Income?

Your annual income is the total amount of income earned over the course of one fiscal year. Gross annual income is your total income from all sources before any deductions.

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