Four things to know about qualifying and closing a mortgage loan for Kentucky First Time Home Buyers
1. Do Mortgage Interest Rates Change Daily?
The good news is this: Once you find a home and get it under contract, you can lock your mortgage loan rate. Typically it takes about 30-45 days to close a mortgage loan in Kentucky, so the typical lock is for 30-60 days. If rates get better you may be able to negotiate a better rate with your lender, but they usually have to improve by at least 25 basis points (.25) to do that. Not all lenders offer this option. The longer you lock the loan, the greater the costs. It is usually free to lock in a loan for up to 90 days without having to pay a fee.
What a lot of lenders are experiencing now is that some loans don’t close on time for various reasons. You can always extend the lock on the loan but it will costs you usually .125 basis points to do so. If you let the lock expire on the loan, then you have to take worse case pricing on that day when you go to relock. It is usually best to extend the lock on your loan.
2. What kind of Credit Score Do I need to qualify?
3. What are the down payment requirements?
FHA will allow a home buyer to purchase a house with as little as 3.5% down. If your credit scores are low, say 680 and below, a lot of times it makes sense to go FHA because everyone pays the same mortgage insurance premiums no matter what your score is, and the down payment can be gifted to you. Meaning you really don’t have to have any skin into the game when it comes to down payment. They even allow down payment assistance through eligible parties (government grants or non-profits). Lastly, FHA will allow for higher debt to income ratios with sometimes getting loan pre-approvals up to 55% of your total gross monthly income.
VA loans offer eligible Veterans and Active Duty Personnel to buy a home going no money down with no monthly mortgage insurance. This is probably the best no money down loan out there since the rates are traditionally very low on comparison to other government insured mortgages and no monthly mortgage insurance. The VA loan can be used anywhere in the state of Kentucky with the maximum VA loan limit being $417k
USDA loans offer people buying a home in rural areas (typically towns of $20k or less) to buy a home going zero down. You cannot currently own another home and there is household income limits of $75,000 for a household family of four, and up to $99,000 for a household of five or more. You search USDA website for eligible areas and household income limits below at the yellow highlighted link :
4. What if I have had a bankruptcy or foreclosure in the past?
Text or call phone: (502) 905-3708
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 views of my employer. Not all products or services mentioned on this site may fit all people
- USDA loan are only available in certain counties of Kentucky.
- There are two types of USDA loans available: Direct and Guaranteed.
- 100% financing. No down payment
- USDA will go down to 620-640 score range and uses and automated underwriting pre-approval system called GUS-Guarantee Underwriting System. The GUS findings will dictate your loan pre-approval.
- Income limits based on county and number of people in household.
- Must be 3 years removed from bankruptcy and foreclosure
- No purchase price limit
- Upfront funding fee of 1% of loan amount paid to RD at closing
- Annual mi fee of ..35% paid each month for life of loan.
- Takes on average 30-45 days to close.
- 30 year fixed rate is the only term available and rates are usually comparable to FHA and VA government mortgage insured rates.
- Do not have to be a first time home buyer and can currently own another home if USDA deems the current living situation not suitable.
- Appraisal has to meet FHA minimum standards
- You can buy a home with land on USDA Loans as long as the property does not have any agricultural characteristics or income producing capabilities.
- There is no set max acreage but the appraisal will dictate approval of property by USDA.
- You can only use USDA loans to purchase property or refinance an existing USDA loan
Senior Loan Officer
What is the Welcome Home Program?
The Welcome Home Program (WHP) offers grants to fund reasonable down payments and closing costs incurred in conjunction with the acquisition or construction of owner-occupied housing by low- and moderate-income homebuyers. The grants are limited to $5,000 per homebuyer and Members are subject to an aggregate limit of $200,000 per offering. All funds are reserved for specific homebuyers purchasing specific homes and cannot be transferred to other homebuyers or to other homes. Welcome Home funds will be available for reservation on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 8:00 AM ET on March 1, 2018, and will remain available until all funds have been reserved.
Who Can Use the WHP?
The FHLB has established a set-aside of Affordable Housing Program (AHP) funds to help create homeownership. These funds are available to Members as grants to assist their mortgage loan applicants in the home buying process. This is our most widely used program, ideally suited to the needs of community lenders and their customers.
What are the Program Requirements?
Below is an abbreviated list of program eligibility requirements:
- The total income for all occupants must be at or below 80 percent of the Mortgage Revenue Bond (MRB) limit for the county and state where the property is located. The FHLB has an Income and Affordability Workbook to assist in determining household income eligibility.
- Homebuyers must contribute at least $500 of their own funds towards down payment and/or closing costs.
- WHP applicants do not have to be first-time homebuyers. However, all first-time homebuyers are required to complete a homeownership counseling program.
- WHP grant funds are intended only for homebuyers who qualify for the first mortgage based on their own merit. Co-signors and co-borrowers are not allowed unless they will occupy the home as their primary residence and their incomes are included in determining eligibility.
- WHP grant funds may be used in conjunction with other local, state and federal funding sources and with the FHLB Cincinnati’s Community Investment Cash Advance Programs.
- The Member who reserves the WHP funds must originate the first loan, but the loan may close in the name of a third party.
- The interest rate for the first mortgage may not exceed 7.50 percent.
- The interest rate for the second mortgage may not exceed 11.00 percent.
- Only second mortgages provided by formal organizations, community development financial institutions, housing finance agencies, non-profit organizations, etc. are acceptable.
All eligible property assisted with WHP funds is subject to a five-year retention mechanism (Retention Agreement), which may require the household to repay all, or a portion, of the subsidy, if the home is sold or refinanced within five years from the closing of the transaction.
How Do I Apply?
Reserving WHP Funds
Homebuyers must apply with one of our Member institutions. Click here to search our Member Directory.
Members may reserve funds via the Welcome Home Program link through the FHLB’s Members Only portal by submitting an online Reservation Request with supporting documentation. Instructions for accessing Members Only may be found here.
The FHLB will perform a preliminary review of the Reservation Request and the documentation submitted to determine eligibility of the homebuyer, availability of funds in the program, and availability of funds for the Member. If any of the information is incomplete, additional documentation or information may be required. Note: The Reservation Request will be denied upon receipt if a fully executed loan application is not included.
Written notification will be provided to the Member as to the homebuyer’s eligibility. Submission of a Reservation Request does not constitute an approval of funds. Funds are reserved only upon written notification of approval from the FHLB.
Please allow four weeks for the FHLB to review the Reservation Request and supporting documentation.
Disbursing WHP Funds
Welcome Home funds will only be disbursed after closing. The FHLB has some general guidance and specific instructions that Members and Closing Agents should use in closing mortgages using Welcome Home funds. Funds will be disbursed only to the extent they are required to fill the gap for down payment, closing costs, and counseling fees.
Members may submit a Request for Payment of Reserved Funding with supporting documentation via the Welcome Home Program link through the FHLB’s Members Only portal. Submission of a Request for Payment of Reserved Funding is not an approval of funds disbursement. Once the Request for Payment of Reserved Funding has been reviewed and approved, funds will be disbursed to the Member.
In the event the FHLB determines that funds were used for an ineligible expense, the grant will be reduced by the amount of the ineligible expense unless the household brings adequate funds to the closing to cover the amount of the ineligible expense. Under no circumstances will cash back to the homebuyer be permitted.
Please allow four to six weeks for the FHLB to review the Request for Payment of Reserved Funding and supporting documentation.
Additional Information and Technical Assistance
Documentation requested by the FHLB must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Any documentation requiring an original signature must be mailed to:
Welcome Home Program
P.O. Box 598
Cincinnati, OH 45201-0598
For more information or assistance, please contact the Housing & Community Investment Department at (513) 852- 7680 or toll-free (888) 345-2246 or email us at email@example.com.
For assistance with Members Only, please contact the Service Desk at 800-781-3090.
I also pulled one of the reviews from the website…
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For my clients, I recommend either Privacy Guard or Credit Check Total to monitor their credit reports and scores. These sites cost about $20-$30 per month to access/track new credit reports and scores. This is the least expensive way that I’ve found to obtain new credit reports and scores that we use for our credit repair service.
Privacy Guard uses a “Credit Xpert” score which is fairly similar to a “FICO score” that banks use to risk grade you for a loan.
Credit Check Total uses a “FICO 8” score which is a generic consumer credit score. This is also very close to a score banks use to grade you.
FICO has designed over 50 different scoring models designed for specific industries (mortgage, auto, credit card, etc..) which will all produce a different 3 digit score ranging from 300-850. Are you confused yet?
If you’re thinking of applying for a loan/credit, go to MyFICO and purchase all of your FICO scores. Their cost is about $60 for all your FICO scores. This will be accurate information that will show you the same scores that the banks will see to approve or deny you.
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