First-time home buyer, No down payment! Did I read that correctly?
Buying your first home is a significant milestone, but you're going to have to your due-diligence to qualify for financing. Here is a list of first time home buyer qualifications so you can better assess your position and decide if the time is right for you to get into your first home.
Your Credit History
One of the most significant determinants of interest rates, or even getting a loan at all, is a borrower's credit score. While different loans have different credit restrictions, and those restrictions are constantly changing, what doesn't change is the direct impact a credit score can have on the interest rate of your mortgage. If you have good credit, you're already in a high position. If you have bad credit, have blemishes like foreclosure, bankruptcy, or have accounts in collections, or if you lack a credit history, consider taking steps to repair your credit before applying. One of the best credit sweeps sites I've come across is expertcreditsweeps. Please say I sent you.
The Down Payment
The savings required for a down payment on a home are another qualification of sorts. Buyers previously needed to put down close to 20% of the home’s selling price, which is a substantial amount of money. The amount of your minimum required down payment will depend on the type of loan you choose. Each mortgage type carries its own guidelines, and underwriters will closely scrutinize your ability to repay the loan.
VA Loans: They offer competitive rates and attractive terms. The best thing about a VA loan? No down payment. You read correctly! Zero down. But you have to be a past or present member of the Armed Forces to qualify.
FHA Loans: The minimum down payment requirement is 3.5%. There's a mortgage insurance premium, but it can be folded into the loan.
Conventional Loans: Most conventional loans are fixed-rate mortgages, and most don't have firm down payment requirement. Although 100% loans aren't available, you might qualify for as little as a 3% down payment if you have a pretty good credit score. And some special conventional loans for certain classes of people, can require zero down.
A borrower’s income determines how much a lender will offer, which makes it one of the most important first time home buyer qualifications because it determines the kind of house you can afford. Joint income is allowed here, as long as you’re buying jointly with a spouse or someone else.
Lenders will also calculate your debt/income ratio, which is the ratio of any ongoing monthly payments.