Myth 1: You need a big down payment to buy a home
According to the survey, the average American believes that 17% of the purchase price is the minimum down payment required to buy a home. Millennials have an even more pessimistic view – they think that a 21% down payment is required.
It’s true that a 20% down payment is the mortgage industry standard, but it is by no means a minimum requirement. A conventional mortgage can be obtained with a down payment of as little as 3% by creditworthy borrowers, and even lower-credit applicants can obtain an FHA mortgagewith a down payment as low as 3.5%.
Even better, Veterans and buyers of certain rural homes can potentially qualify for no-money-down financing through the VA and USDA loan programs, respectively. Some individual lenders offer 100% financing programs as well that anyone can take advantage of, so it could be a good idea to visit a few banks in your area to see what’s available.
Myth 2: You need excellent credit to get approved for a mortgage
Seventeen percent of all adults and 22% of millennials say that credit is an obstacle standing in the way of becoming a homeowner. And it’s true that a high credit score certainly helps your chances of approval and can get you a lower interest rate.
In reality, however, relatively few potential homebuyers can’t buy a house because of credit issues alone. The median FICO credit score in the U.S. is 700, while the minimum credit score necessary for a conventional mortgage is just 620. An FHA loan with 3.5% down requires a FICO score of 580, and with a 10% down payment, it’s possible to get an FHA loan with a score of as little as 500.
According to FICO’s latest score distribution data, 70% of the population has a FICO score of 650 or above, and 80% are above 600. Just 4.7% of the population have a FICO score under 500.
To be clear, borderline credit combined with other issues, such as little money in savings, unstable income, or lots of debt can be a reason for mortgage rejection. But for most people, credit alone is not a major obstacle.
Kentucky First Time Home Buyer Programs for 2017
• At least 3%-5% down
• Closing costs will vary on which rate you choose and the lender. Typically the higher the rate, the lesser closing costs due to the lender giving you a lender credit back at closing for over par pricing. Also, called a no closing costs option. You have to weigh the pros and cons to see if it makes sense to forgo the lower rate and lower monthly payment for the higher rate and less closing costs.
Fico scores needed start at 620, but most conventional lenders will want a higher score to qualify for the 3-5% minimum down payment requirements Most buyers using this loan have high credit scores (over 720) and at least 5% down.
The rates are a little higher compared to FHA, VA, or USDA loan but the mortgage insurance is not for life of a loan and can be rolled off when you reach 80% equity position in the home.
Conventional loans require 4-7 years removed from Bankruptcy and foreclosure.
Max Conventional loan limits are set at $424,00 for 2017 in Kentucky
If you meet income eligibility requirements and are looking to settle in a rural area, you might qualify for the KY USDA Rural Housing program. The program guarantees qualifying loans, reducing lenders’ risk and encouraging them to offer buyers 100% loans. That means Kentucky home buyers don’t have to put any money down, and even the “upfront fee” (a closing cost for this type of loan) can be rolled into the financing.
Fico scores usually wanted for this program center around 620 range, with most lenders wanting a 640 score so they can obtain an automated approval through GUS. GUS stands for the Guaranteed Underwriting system, and it will dictate your max loan pre-approval based on your income, credit scores, debt to income ratio and assets.
They also allow for a manual underwrite, which states that the max house payment ratios are set at 29% and 41% respectively of your income.
They loan requires no down payment, and the current mortgage insurance is 1% upfront, called a funding fee, and .35% annually for the monthly mi payment. Since they recently reduced their mi requirements, USDA is one of the best options out there for home buyers looking to buy in a rural area.
A rural area typically will be any area outside the major cities of Louisville, Lexington, Paducah, Bowling Green, Richmond, Frankfort, and parts of Northern Kentucky.
There is a map link below to see the qualifying areas.
There is also a max household income limits with most cutoff starting at $76,000 for a family of four, and up to $98,000 for a family of five or more.
USDA requires 3 years removed from bankruptcy and foreclosure.
There is no max USDA loan limit.
FHA loans are good for home buyers with lower credit scores and no much down, or with down payment assistance grants. FHA will allow for grants, gifts, for their 3.5% minimum investment and will go down to a 580 credit score.
The current mortgage insurance requirements are kinda steep when compared to USDA, VA , but the rates are usually good so it can counteract the high mi premiums. As I tell borrowers, you will not have the loan for 30 years, so don’t worry too much about the mi premiums.
The mi premiums are for life of loan like USDA.
FHA requires 2 years removed from bankruptcy and 3 years removed from foreclosure.
Maximum FHA loan limits in Kentucky are set around $285,000 and below.
Kentucky VA Loan
VA loans are for veterans and active duty military personnel. The loan requires no down payment and no monthly mi premiums, saving you on the monthly payment. It does have a funding fee like USDA, but it is higher starting at 2% for first-time use, and 3% for second-time use. The funding fee is financed into the loan, so it is not something you have to pay upfront out of pocket.
VA loans can be made anywhere, unlike the USDA restrictions, and there is no income household limit and the max loan is $417,000 in Kentucky
Most VA lenders I work with will want a 620 credit score.
VA requires 2 years removed from bankruptcy or foreclosure.
This type of loan is administered by KHC in the state of Kentucky. They typically have $4500 to $6000 down payment assistance year around, that is in the form of a second mortgage that you pay back over 10 years.
Senior Loan Officer
American Mortgage Solutions, Inc.
10602 Timberwood Circle, Suite 3
Louisville, KY 40223
text or call my phone: (502) 905-3708
email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
The view and opinions stated on this website belong solely to the authors, and are intended for informational purposes only. The posted information does not guarantee approval, nor does it comprise full underwriting guidelines. This does not represent being part of a government agency. The views expressed on this post are mine and do not necessarily reflect the view of my employer. Not all products or services mentioned on this site may fit all people. NMLS ID# 57916, (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). Mortgage loans only offered in Kentucky.
All loans and lines are subject to credit approval, verification, and collateral evaluation and are originated by lender. Products and interest rates are subject to change without notice.
Joel E Lobb
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Kentucky FHA, VA, USDA & Rural Housing, KHC and Fannie Mae mortgage loans.