Did You Know?

Borrowers must meet FHA guidelines to be eligible for FHA-insured mortgages. These requirements are considered more flexible when compared to conventional loans.

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FHA Guidelines

Buying a home can be daunting, which is why it helps to be as informed as possible. Learn all about the FHA loan process and what it takes to get approved.

What Is an FHA Loan?

An FHA loan is insured by the Federal Housing Administration. It comes with low down payments for borrowers and protects lenders from financial risk if the borrower defaults on the loan. Lenders have to meet certain criteria for their mortgages to be termed "FHA-approved," and borrowers must also satisfy a number of requirements to qualify for one of these loans.

FHA Loan Limits

LThe FHA has a maximum loan amount that it will insure, based on county and the property size. These caps, known as the FHA Lending Limits, are updated annually and are influenced by the conventional loan limits set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. FHA loan limits in 2020 range from $331,760 to $765,600.

FHA Credit Requirements

A big selling point for FHA loans is the low credit score requirement. Homebuyers with insufficient credit histories, who find it difficult to qualify for conventional loans with higher minimums, can more easily meet the FHA's minimum credit requirement of a 580 FICO score. Learn about what goes into the make-up of you credit score, and how you can work to increase it.

FHA Closing Costs

As with any mortgage, you'll incur some fees that need to be paid at the closing of your home loan. These charges are collectively called closing costs and they typically amount to 3% of the loan amount. FHA closing costs encompass all the fees and charges owed at the closing of a mortgage, such as appraisal fees, inspection fees, deposit verification fees, and home inspection fees.

FHA Mortgage Insurance (MIP)

In order to continue backing home loans, the FHA collects a monthly Mortgage Insurance Premium. These funds are used to protect the lenders—in that case that FHA borrowers default on their mortgages—and to fund the agency itself. Homebuyers with an FHA loan pay an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium, as well as the Monthly Mortgage Insurance Premium.

Debt-to-Income Ratio

It's important that the FHA ensures that borrowers are not signing up for mortgages they cannot reasonably afford, which is why it is mandated that all potential homebuyers' debt-to-income ratios fall within certain set maximums. This helps lower the number of foreclosures since borrowers aren't bound to a mortgage they cannot afford.

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FHA Loan Articles

Getting Approved for an FHA Loan

While an FHA home loan is a good option for first-time homebuyers who don’t have enough money saved for a large down payment, it’s important to understand the ins and outs of the FHA guidelines, and what it takes to get approved as a borrower. 

When Buying with an FHA Loan, Don't Skip the Home Inspection

This wait isn’t easy when you've been shopping for a new home. But getting a home inspection is a crucial step, and not one you should consider skipping. Make sure you hire a reliable home inspector, wait for your inspection report, and watch out for these red flags. 

Things to Know About Making an FHA Loan Down Payment

Many first-time homebuyers need some help understanding and navigating the ins and outs of the mortgage process, and down payments are an essential part of that. A down payment is an upfront installment made on a large purchase while the remainder is paid off with a loan.

Let's Compare FHA Loans to VA, USDA, and Conventional Mortgages

Buying and financing a home is complicated and can become overwhelming. It's important for you to stay informed, and know what your options are. So, start with the basics and read about the four different mortgage types available before approaching a lender.

FHA Loans for Dreamers

With a new waiver in place, Dreamers have access to affordable FHA home loans designed for first-time homebuyers. There is no discrepancy in the FHA’s eligibility requirements when it comes to DACA status holders applying for an FHA-backed mortgage. They must meet all the same criteria.

Buying a House When Supply is Low

Buying a house is overwhelming to begin with. Make it a seller’s market, and buyers become even more nervous. Supply of real estate has been low for most of 2021, in part because of the Coronavirus pandemic and the historically low interest rates since 2019.


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