Definition of Credit history highlighted in green with text marker.
Getting a FHA loan in Kentucky in 2018 you will be confronted with minimum credit score requirements set forth by FHA and the lender. Even though FHA will insure the mortgage loan at a certain credit score, you will see that lenders will create “credit-overlays” to protect their risk and ask for a higher credit score.
So keep in mind when you are getting a FHA loan in 2018 some lenders will have higher credit score minimums in addition to the FHA Mortgage Insurance program.
For a Kentucky Home buyer wanting to purchase a home or refinance their existing FHA loan, FHA requires a 3.5% down payment and the borrower must have a 580 FICO Credit Score. If the score is below 580, then you would need 10% down and still qualify on a manual underwrite.
You must have a FICO score of at least 500 to be eligible for an Kentucky FHA loan. If your FICO score is from 500 to 579, your down payment on the loan is 10 percent of the loan.
If your FICO score is 580 or higher, your down payment is only 3.5 percent. If your credit score is less than 580, it may be more cost effective to take the necessary steps to improve your score before taking out the loan, rather than putting the money into a larger down payment.
How do they get the credit score: There are three main credit bureaus in the US. Equifax, Experian, and Transunion. The three scores vary but should be relativley close as long as the same creditors are reporting to the same bureaus.
You will get a variation in the scores due to all creditors or collection companies don’t report to all three bureaus. This is why they take the mid score. So if you have a 590 experian, 680 equifax, and 620 transunion, your qualifying credit score would be 620
Based on my experience with lenders that I deal with in Kentucky on FHA loans, most lenders require 620 middle credit score for consideration for loan approval.
How do they get the score: They take the mid score, so if you have a 590 experian, 680 equifax, and 620 transunion, your qualifying score would be 620.
If your score is below 620, a manual underwrite is where the AUS (Automated Underwriting System) refers your loan to an human being, and they look at the entire file to see if they can overturn and approve the mortgage loan because the Desktop Underwriting Automated Software could not approve you.
With scores below 620, they typically will want to verify your rent history, have no bankruptcies in last two years, and no foreclosures in the last 3 years.
If you have had any lates since the bankruptcy this will probably result in a denial on a refer manual underwrite file.
Your max house payment will be set at 31% of your gross monthly income, and your new house payment plus the bills you are paying on the credit report cannot be more than 43%.
Typically, on scores below 620 for FHA loans, they will also look at reserves or money you have saved-up after the loan is made to try and qualify you. For example, if you have a 401k or savings account that have at least 4 months reserves (take your mortgage payment x 4) and this would equal your reserves. They look at this as a rainy day fund and could help you keep up on your bills if you were unemployed or could not work.
Maximum FHA loan limits in Kentucky are set around $285,000 and below.
If you are looking to take a FHA loan in 2017 to buy or refinance a home in Kentucky, please contact me below with your questions about the credit score requirements and how they affect your loan approval.
What credit score do you need to qualify for a mortgage?
The first thing to keep in mind is that qualifying for a mortgage involves a lot more than just a credit score. While your FICO score is a very important ingredient, it is just one factor. Lenders also look at your income and level of debt, among other things.
As a rule of thumb, however, a credit score below 620 will make buying a home very difficult. A FICO score below 620 is considered sub-prime. In the past there were mortgage companies that specialized in sub-prime mortgages. Because of the challenges in the credit market over the last year or so, however, sub-prime loans have become difficult if not impossible to obtain.
A FICO score between 600 and 640 is considered fair to good credit. But keep in mind, this range of credit scores does not guarantee you will qualify for a mortgage, and if you do qualify, it won’t get you the lowest interest rate possible. Still, to buy a home aim for a score of at least 620, recognizing that other factors weigh in the decision and that some banks may require a higher score.
What credit score do you need to get a low rate mortgage?
It use to be that a score of about 720 would yield the lowest mortgage rates available. Today, the best rates kick in with a FICO score of 760. And interest rates go up significantly as your credit score drops. To give you an idea, the following table shows current rates by credit score and calculates a monthly principal and interest payment based on a $300,000 loan:
lenders will pull what they call a “tri-merge” credit report which will show three different fico scores from Transunion, Equifax, and Experian. The lenders will throw out the high and low score and take the “middle score.” For example, if you had a 614, 610, and 629 score from the three main credit bureaus, your qualifying score would be 614.
So if you only have one score, you may not qualify. Lenders will have to pull their own credit report and scores so if you had it ran somewhere else or saw it on a website or credit card you may own, it will not matter to the lender, because they have to use their own credit report and scores.
Lastly, lenders will pull your credit report for free nowadays so this should not be a big deal as long as your scores are high enough.
offered by FHA, VA, USDA, Fannie Mae, and KHC all have their minimum fico score requirements and lenders will create overlays in addition to what the Government agencies will accept, so even if on paper FHA says they will go down to 580 or 500 in some cases on fico scores, very few lenders will go below the 620 threshold.
If you have low fico scores it may make sense to check around with different lenders to see what their minimum fico scores are for loans.
The lenders I currently deal with have the following fico cutoffs for credit scores:
As you can see, 580 is the minimum score with most lenders for a FHA, VA, or Fannie Mae loan, and 640 is required for the no down payment programs offered by USDA and KHC in Kentucky for First Time Home Buyers wanting to go no money down.
Senior Loan Officer
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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 view of my employer. Not all products or services mentioned on this site may fit all people. NMLS ID# 57916, (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). USDA Mortgage loans only offered in Kentucky.
All loans and lines are subject to credit approval, verification, and collateral evaluation
Senior Loan Officer
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 view of my employer. Not all products or services mentioned on this site may fit all people. NMLS ID# 57916, (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org
). Mortgage loans only offered in Kentucky.
All loans and lines are subject to credit approval, verification, and collateral evaluation and are originated by lender. Products and interest rates are subject to change without notice. Manufactured and mobile homes are not eligible as collateral.