When it comes to an FHA, or Federal Housing Administration, loan, the full list of actual requirements in order to obtain something like this are published in a 1,000+ page handbook. Thankfully, the requirements have been summarized so that no one has to actually sit through something that incredibly long and painful handbook!

Generally speaking, the requirements for an FHA loan include the following:

  • An individual must have a credit score of at least 500.
  • An individual must have a debt-to-income ratio of 50% or less.
  • An individual must make a down payment of 3.5% if their total credit score is 580 or higher.
  • An individual must make a down payment of 10% if their total credit score is between 500 and 579.
  • An individual’s home must be their primary residence and must also meet the Federal Housing Administration’s minimum property requirements.

 

It’s also important to note that FHA loans are not only for first-time home buyers. Typically, they have more relaxed qualification requirements as opposed to more conventional mortgages. As a result, FHA loans are more attractive to borrowers who have lower credit scores or smaller down payments, both of which are considered to be common challenges to first-time home buyers. However, anyone who meets the eligibility requirements will be able to utilize an FHA loan.

When it comes to an FHA, the overall minimum down payment will depend on an individual’s total credit score. For instance, if someone has a credit score totaling 580 or higher, then the minimum down payment required will be 3.5%. On the other hand, if someone has a credit score totaling between 500 and 579, then the minimum down payment required will be 10%.

All lenders will also pay close attention to debt-to-income ratio as well. This is always the case regardless of what mortgage type an individual obtains. The FHA requires a total debt-to-income ratio of 50% or less.

In terms of income requirements, there is no minimum or maximum salary that will qualify an individual for an FHA-insured mortgage or prevent them from receiving one. On the other hand, the following factors will apply:

  • An individual must have at least two established credit accounts.
  • An individual must not have delinquent federal debt or judgments or debt associated with previous FHA-insured mortgages.
  • An individual must account for any cash gifts that assist with the down payments. The gifts must also be verified in writing, signed, and dated by the donor.

 

Documentation will also be required when applying for an FHA home loan, which includes the following:

  • Proof of a Social Security number.
  • Original pay stubs, W-2 forms, or valid tax returns.

 

The property itself will also need to meet specific requirements prior to an individual being eligible to qualify for an FHA mortgage. These include the following:

  • The loan must be for a primary residence. At least one borrower must occupy the residence within 60 days of closing.
  • The property cannot be an investment property.
  • FHA appraisal includes a strict inspection.
  • The property cannot be a flip.
  • The title must be taken in an individual’s own name or in the name of a living trust at settlement.
  • The property must also meet FHA loan limits. These vary by county. To see Corpus Christi’s FHA loan limits click here!

 

Additionally, the FHA is who insures the loan; however, the lender is who makes the final decision regarding whether to hand the money over, as well as determining which specific qualifications are required.

 

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