I am married and looking to buy my first home. I am planning on withdrawing around, but not more than, $20,000 for use as a down payment. There are two IRA accounts under my name, both opened by me. One is a Roth IRA and one is a traditional IRA. Both have the funds required.

My question is: I wish to withdraw $10,000, the maximum allowed by the IRS for first-time home buyers without a 10% penalty. Is that maximum limit enforced on a per account basis, or a total withdrawn from all accounts? See, I am planning on withdrawing $10,000 from the traditional, and $7,000 from the Roth. This would give me, maybe, $7,500 from the traditional (income tax) and the full $7,000 from the Roth (since it is already taxed). I am hoping to get around $17,000 from both accounts at the end of the day.

If that doesn't work, what are my options?

2 Answers 2


All the IRA-related limits are per individual. You can have as many accounts as you want, but from legal perspective - they're all counted together as one. So you can only withdraw $10K without penalty, the other $7K will cost you $700 in penalty.


Its 10k per Tax ID aka Social Security Number

You can take the 10k from the Traditional IRA and avoid the penalty for first time home purchase but still have to pay income tax.

You can still take the 10k from the Roth as well (though not under the exemption). However the roth MAY not be taxable if you only take out the CONTRIBUTIONS. This is something your broker may or may not track. Its done with an 8606 form but I digress. If you take any EARNINGS & DIVIDENDS that have grown from the contributions then that part would be taxable and penalized if your under 59.5.

  • 1
    +1 Whatever you've contributed in to the Roth IRA, you can take out penalty free (you've already paid the tax on this money) at any time for any reason.
    – Ben Miller
    Commented Aug 11, 2015 at 23:58
  • You still get a 10% penalty if you do not qualify as a first-time home buyer or have already taken out $10,000 as a first-time home buyer expense. Right?
    – Daniel L.
    Commented Aug 20, 2015 at 23:55
  • Yes. If it is not first time home purchase you will still be penalized.
    – Dynas
    Commented Aug 21, 2015 at 13:03

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