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The basic FHA requirements to be eligible for an FHA home loan are simple; applicants must be lawful residents of the USA and be of legal age to sign a mortgage. Up front mortgage insurance is required with FHA loans.

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FHA.com is a privately owned website, is not a government agency, and does not make loans.

FHA Loan Articles

News and Updates for Homeowners

What are the Basic Requirements for an FHA Loan?

December 6, 2010 - The basic FHA requirements to be eligible for an FHA home loan are simple; applicants must be lawful residents of the USA and be of legal age to sign a mortgage. (That age may vary by state--check with your loan officer when in doubt.) The borrower must also be willing to certify they intend to live in the home purchased with an FHA mortgage.

Up front mortgage insurance is required with FHA loans, and qualified borrowers are eligible for approximately 96.5% financing. The borrower is able to finance the upfront mortgage insurance premium into the mortgage.

Some people mistakenly believe they earn too much money to qualify for an FHA mortgage. This is not true, but the reverse does apply. FHA requirements state the applicant must have enough income to qualify for both the mortgage payment itself plus other debts including typical home owner expenses like utilities and other payments.

Income limits do come into play when the borrower wants to apply for down payment assistance or other programs designed to help FHA loan applicants afford a new home.

Among the other basic requirements for an FHA home loan, applicants must submit to a credit report. Your credit score, payment history and job history may all be contributing factors in the FHA loan application; FHA borrowers should prepare for at least a year before starting a house hunt in order to get their financial affairs in order and be ready to have their credit scrutinized.

One question many newcomers to the FHA loan process ask: Is it possible to purchase a fixer-upper with an FHA home loan? This basic question makes all the difference for some applicants--those willing to put in time and effort to remodel or repair a property could find major savings on their initial home purchase. The FHA does allow borrowers to locate a fixer-upper; under what is known as HUD's 203(k) program, a qualified borrower can not only purchase such a home but also include the cost of repairs or improvements into the loan.

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