FHA loan requirements are generally more lenient than those of conventional lenders. The Federal Housing Administration is a government program administered by Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to help Americans who can’t qualify for a conventional mortgage loan become homeowners. With the announcement of changes to help hundreds of thousands of Americans impacted by the current housing crisis, FHA loan requirements have never been easier to meet.
There are no minimum FHA loan requirements for income to obtain an FHA mortgage loan, but you must demonstrate steady income for at least three years, and demonstrate that you’ve consistently paid your bills on time. FHA loan requirements allow seasonal pay, child support, retirement pension payments, unemployment compensation, VA benefits, military pay, Social Security income, alimony, and rent paid by family to qualify as income sources. FHA loan requirements also allow part-time pay, overtime, and bonus pay to count as income as long as they are steady.
The FHA allows you to use 29% of your income towards housing costs and at total of 41% towards housing expenses plus other long-term debt. Compare this with a conventional loan, which generally allows only 28% toward housing and 36% towards housing expenses plus other debt.
FHA loan requirements specify that you have a down payment of at least 3% of the purchase price of the home, but this cash may be a gift or grant. Most affordable loan programs offered by private lenders require between a 3% – 5% down payment, with a minimum of 3% coming directly from the borrower’s own funds.
FHA loan requirements are generally more flexible than conventional lenders are in their qualifying guidelines. You can qualify for an FHA loan without a credit history. If you prefer to pay debts in cash or are too young to have established credit, there are other ways to prove your eligibility. Talk to your lender for details.
FHA loan requirements do not include a requirement for the borrow to have good credit. In the case of bad credit, the FHA allows you to re-establish credit if two years have passed since a bankruptcy has been discharged and all judgments and tax liens have been paid, or if arrangements have been made to establish a repayment plan with the IRS or state Department of Revenue. The FHA may also allow you to borrow once three years have passed since a foreclosure or a deed-in-lieu has been resolved.
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The Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 has markedly increased the capacity of the FHA to insure loans for borrowers affected by the US housing crisis. Loan amount limits have been raised in some areas, and other restrictions loosened. FHA loan requirements have never been so generous, and any home owner suffering mortgage stress would be well advised to investigate the possibility of FHA loan assistance.