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Principal, Interest, Taxes and Insurance. Also called monthly housing expense. The periodic payment that includes a principal and interest payment plus a contribution to the escrow account set up by the lender to pay insurance premiums and property taxes.

If you do not have an escrow account, then the lender still calculates this amount and uses it as part of determining your debt-to-income ratio - the ratio, expressed as a percentage, which results when a borrower's monthly payment obligation on long-term debts is divided by his or her gross monthly income.

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