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Buying or refinancing a home with an FHA mortgage should mean shopping around for the right participating lender. It doesn’t always happen as some borrowers will select their current lender or possibly a new one that offers better terms

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November 20, 2019
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FHA.com is a privately owned website, is not a government agency, and does not make loans.

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What Your Lender Can Tell Your Before You Commit

What Your Lender Can Tell Your Before You Commit
October 24, 2019 - Buying or refinancing a home with an FHA mortgage should mean shopping around for the right participating lender. It doesn’t always happen as some borrowers will select their current lender or possibly a new one that offers better terms. But not all borrowers are as invested in getting the best possible deal, and often settle.

To avoid this, there are a few questions you can ask your FHA lender before deciding to apply with that financial institution.

What Are Your Current FHA Mortgage Loan Interest Rates?

For best results, ask every lender you are considering about their current interest rates and compare those rates online with other lenders.

Be sure to quiz your lender about the rate quoted; ask under what circumstances you would qualify for that rate in terms of credit scores and other financial qualifications.

Do You Offer Loans With Perks Based on my Status as a Buyer?

Some lenders may offer home loans with more competitive terms for certain groups of people. First-time home buyers are the most obvious category, but you may also find perks for those with existing accounts with a lender, or extra consideration given for those who are veterans, working for city or municipal government, etc.

These are always offered by the lender and not the FHA, so you will find the offerings vary greatly depending on the market and the financial institution.

Which FHA Loans Do You Offer?

Not all FHA lenders offer all FHA loans, so you will need to determine up front if the lender offers what you need. Are you looking for a mobile home loan? An FHA Condo loan? Or do you need a typical suburban home? Do you need more than one living unit? You can buy a home with up to four units according to FHA loan rules.

But not all lenders are willing to lend for four-unit properties. And some FHA home loan programs such as the FHA One-Time Close construction loan have FHA rules that say as many as four units are allowed, but the lender may only choose to approve FHA construction loans for single-unit homes only.

You may find some lenders aren’t offering certain types of home loans in your area because there is simply no demand for them, or you may find that the majority of mortgage loans or refinance loans offered are for a particular type of home. Condos or mobile homes may not be prevalent in certain areas, so your lender may or may not have such loans available.

That is why you should ask up front about these specific details. Doing so will save you time and money as you continue your journey toward home ownership.

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