First time buyers in the Alpharetta, GA area have more than one option when it comes to low down payment loans for a primary residence. By far the most popular is the FHA loan which only asks for a 3.5% down payment. But there’s another loan option that bears exploring and it’s the HomeReady program from Fannie Mae. Both are excellent programs but if you fit the profile of a HomeReady buyer, it might just trump the offering from FHA. Why?
For starters, the minimum down payment for a HomeReady loan is 3.0% of the sales price, not 3.5%. That might not sound like very much but if you’re a first time buyer saving up to buy a home, that additional 0.5% means another $5,000 on a $100,000 purchase, which can mean a lot to a first timer. And, just like the FHA loan program, there is a mortgage insurance policy that comes with the HomeReady loan. However, there are two such policies with the FHA loan, an upfront premium that is rolled into the loan amount and an annual premium paid in monthly installments. With the HomeReady program, there is only one mortgage insurance policy instead of two. Plus, mortgage insurance with the HomeReady program is cancellable, just as it is with other Fannie Mae loans with less than a 20% down payment. Private mortgage insurance policies for this program are also less expensive compared to standard low-down payment conventional loans.
This program was designed to assist low-to-moderate income buyers as well as to finance residential properties in underserved areas. Income is limited at 100% of Adjusted Median Income for the area, or AMI. For properties located in designated areas, income limitations are lifted. The way to find out if you or the property are eligible for this program, give us a call and we can check on this for you. HomeReady loans are also a bit more forgiving as it relates to credit. The minimum credit score is 620 but rates can be slightly better with a score of 680 or above. Completion of an approved Homebuyer Education Course is also needed. We also have that list of approved course providers.
If you’ve been thinking of buying a home and searching for a low down payment option, while the FHA program is a solid choice, if you and the property are eligible, you should take a closer look at the HomeReady program.