Monday, April 23, 2012

Your Credit Score and Down Payment Assistance

Credit scores are an important consideration in evaluating one’s credit worthiness for a mortgage.  A story recently running on a leading cable news network show, however, quoted a study that seemed to suggest that only home buyers with scores of 700 or greater face the least frustrations in their attempts to obtain a mortgage.  Given the reach of this network’s coverage, that report could lead to second thoughts among potential Metro Atlanta Real Estate buyers with scores that are lower than 700.  Please rest assured that home buyers with credit scores below 700 still frequently close on their purchase of their first home and that home classes are available locally to help Metro Atlanta Home Buyers through the process of getting approved for a mortgage.

Recent interviews with major lenders who offer down payment assistance programs provided as a soft second mortgage has yielded the following information with regard to minimum credit score requirements for Georgia First Home Buyers and families moving up to their other homes in Georgia who are looking to purchase a property for owner-occupancy using Georgia Down Payment Assistance.

Middle Credit Score at or above 640

Many, but not all lenders are now requiring a minimum 640 middle credit score.

  • State of Georgia Down Payment Assistance of up to $7,500 as a soft second mortgage may be available to income eligible owner-occupants with higher debt-to-income ratios who are looking to buy their first home anywhere in Metro Atlanta.
  • Federal Down Payment Assistance matching funds of up to $5,000 as a soft second mortgage forgiven over five years may be available to income eligible owner-occupants who are looking to buy their first home anywhere in Metro Atlanta

Middle Credit Score at or above 620
  • State of Georgia Down Payment Assistance of up to $7,500 may be available to owner-occupants who are looking to buy their first home anywhere in Metro Atlanta, but specific debt-to-income ratios must be in line with program guidelines.
  • Neighborhood Stabilization Program funds of up to $25,000 forgiven over up to ten years may be available to first home buyers and families moving up to other homes in Georgia for the purchase of renovated provider-owned properties in multiple counties throughout Metro Atlanta.
  • Most County Down Payment Assistance Programs of up to $8,000 forgiven over up to ten years may be available to first home buyers for the purchase of properties built after 1977.
  • Invest Atlanta (City of Atlanta) Down Payment Assistance funds of up to $75,867 forgiven over up to ten years may be available to both first home buyers and families moving up for the purchase of real estate within the city limits of Atlanta for owner-occupancy. 
  • VA Loans, while not considered down payment assistance, may be available to the current military personnel and veterans at 100% of the purchase price of either their first home or other homes in Georgia to be used for owner-occupancy.
  • USDA Loans, while not considered down payment assistance, may be available to income eligible borrowers looking to buy their first home for owner-occupancy in some designated rural areas of Metro Atlanta. 
Middle Credit Score at or above 600
Lenders will offer mortgages to borrowers with credit scores at or above 600.  While I have no knowledge of down payment assistance programs available to borrowers in this middle credit score range, clients here have used FHA Mortgages to take advantage of the HUD-$100 down program to purchase HUD-owned homes in Georgia.

No Credit Scores

The State of Georgia Program may also be available to potential first home buyers with no credit history.  Borrowers, however, should have a strong rental history of at least twelve months and other alternative forms of credit (cell phone, utilities, cable, etc.).

In Closing
Please remember that credit scores are an important element in a variety of evaluation tools that help lenders arrive at a borrower’s risk.  Supporting documentation, communication, cooperation and honesty and more will all combine to help lenders determine eligibility and arrive at a mutually beneficial decision regarding a loan.  Call me for an initial discussion about these programs and to obtain a list of home buying classes and participating lenders who may be the right fit for you today.
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Solomon Greene
REALTOR® Keller Williams Realty Atlanta Partners
http://www.AtlantaDownPaymentAssistance.com
(678) 775-2677

1 comment:

Real Estate Investments said...

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