FHA guidelines have been set requiring borrowers and/or their spouse to qualify according to set debt to income ratios.

FHA Loan Rates

March 3, 2015
FHA Rates for March 3, 2015
30 Year Fixed
3.5% Rate
3.74% APR
15 Year Fixed
2.75% Rate
3.0% APR
FHA.com is a private company, is not a government agency, and does not make loans.

Prequalify Now!

Compare mortgage rates for your refinance or home purchase loan.

CHOOSE A LOAN TYPE

then
get
your

FREE CREDIT SCORE

Do you know what's on
your credit report?
FHA.com is a private company, is not a government agency, and does not make loans.

FHA Requirements

Debt-to-Income Ratio Guidelines

In order to prevent homebuyers from getting into a home they cannot afford, FHA requirements and guidelines have been set in place requiring borrowers and/or their spouse to qualify according to set debt to income ratios. These ratios are used to calculate whether or not the potential borrower is in a financial position that would allow them to meet the demands that are often included in owning a home.

The two ratios are as follows:

1) Mortgage Payment Expense to Effective Income

Add up the total mortgage payment (principal and interest, escrow deposits for taxes, hazard insurance, mortgage insurance premium, homeowners' dues, etc.). Then, take that amount and divide it by the gross monthly income. The maximum ratio to qualify is 31%.

See the following example:

Total amount of new house payment:
$750
Borrower's gross monthly income (including spouse, if married):
$2,850
Divide total house payment by gross monthly income:
$750/$2,850
Debt to income ratio:
26.32%

2) Total Fixed Payment to Effective Income

Add up the total mortgage payment (principal and interest, escrow deposits for taxes, hazard insurance, mortgage insurance premium, homeowners' dues, etc.) and all recurring monthly revolving and installment debt (car loans, personal loans, student loans, credit cards, etc.). Then, take that amount and divide it by the gross monthly income. The maximum ratio to qualify is 43%.

See the following example:

Total amount of new house payment:
$750
Total amount of monthly recurring debt:
$400
Total amount of monthly debt:
$1,150
Borrower's gross monthly income (including spouse, if married)
$2,850
Divide total monthly debt by gross monthly income:
$1,150/$2,850
Debt to income ratio:
40.35%

Please note that the above indicators do not exclusively determine whether or not a candidate will qualify for an FHA loan. Other factors will be considered, including credit history and job stability.

FHA Loan Articles

Read About Mortgage News, FHA Updates, and Guidelines
FHA Reduces Annual Mortgage Insurance Premiums

FHA made an announcement about cuts in the annual mortgage insurance premium (MIP) in a preliminary January 2015 announcment. The new FHA policy reduces the rate for most Title II forward mortgages with terms greater than 15 years.

FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums Requirements

There are many types of questions about FHA mortgage insurance premium requirements, but since the FHA changed its MIP policies to extend MIP for the maximum duration permitted by law, we've seen more questions about those changes.

Private Mortgage Insurance Requirements

One common question we get involves Private Mortgage Insurance and the premiums for that insurance. Borrowers should discuss PMI policy changes with a loan officer.

FICO Scores and FHA Lender Requirements

The FHA has a section in its rulebook that lists a minimum FICO score for borrowers. In general, if your FICO score is below 580, you won't qualify for the lowest down payment amount of 3.5%. This minimum may be lower than the standards set by lenders.

Minimum Property Requirements for Septic Systems

Lenders are responsible for making sure a property lives up to local requirements, community sewage systems are properly licensed, and these systems are adequate enough to service the property.