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While the 580 FICO score minimum is a major factor in how an applicant will pay for a mortgage, your credit score is not the only thing the FHA takes into account.

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January 21, 2019
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FICO Scores Over 580 Help Borrowers Qualify For FHA Loans

Home buyers looking to take advantage of great FHA loan benefits should already know they need to establish the best possible credit rating. Applicants with a better credit rating increase their options for mortgage or refinance loans. In order to qualify for the low 3.5 percent FHA loan down payment, applicants will need a FICO score of at least 580. Those that don't meet that criteria will have to put a down payment of 10 percent on the mortgage they want.

FHA loans are designed to help home buyers, so these government-insured loans usually come with more lenient requirements than typical mortgages or refinancing terms from traditional lenders. While the benefits don't vary much between someone with good credit and excellent credit, there is a very noticeable margin for those with bad credit and average to good credit.

Why You Need a Better Credit Score

While the 580 FICO score threshold is a major factor in how an applicant will pay for a mortgage, your credit score isn't the only thing the FHA takes into account. Payment history, bankruptcies and foreclosures are also issues that the agency looks at. While these factors may hurt your credit score, they don't necessarily eliminate you from loan eligibility.

That doesn't mean, however, that you can neglect your credit. While the FHA is lenient enough to help those with bad credit ratings, they also require recent credit history to be in good standing.

Extenuating circumstances like job loss, injury or anything else that prevented you to pay in a timely manner can, and most likely will, be taken into account. However, if you have demonstrated you purposely neglected payments or your credit rating, your chances of qualifying for an FHA loan will be reduced.

Be Safe, Not Sorry With Your Credit

Obviously, it's better to have good credit than bad credit when applying for any loan. Don't take your credit history for granted, though, because you might find an error or inaccuracy that could hurt your chances of qualifying for an FHA loan. Instead of going through the headache of disputing your application with your agency and holding up the process, be proactive and make sure your credit score and ratings are where they should be before approaching the FHA.

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FHA Loan Articles and Mortgage News

Are FHA Home Loans Available During a Government Shutdown?

January 16, 2019 - Are FHA home loans, which are government-backed mortgages offered by participating commercial lenders, still available during a government shutdown or partial shutdown? This is an important question and borrowers or potential borrowers should know the facts.

FHA One-Time Close Construction Loan Rules for 2019

January 11, 2019 - FHA One-Time Close construction loans are available in 2019 at higher FHA loan limits than in 2018. This is good news for anyone who wants a low-down payment construction loan that features only ONE application and closing date.

FHA Loans, Air-B-n-B, and Rental Units

January 8, 2019 - The sharing economy has made entrepreneurs out of many who never thought of earning income by being an Uber driver or acting as an Airbnb host. Some are tempted to buy a multi-unit home and begin offering it for rent to Airbnb users. Is this possible with an FHA mortgage?

Do Higher FHA Loan Limits in 2019 Mean Higher Credit Requirements?

January 4, 2019 - FHA loan limits are going up for the second year in a row. In 2019 your ability to buy a 1-4 unit home gets a boost thanks to the higher limits. FHA loan FICO score requirements and other credit rules of the program will NOT change in 2019.

When Does a Bigger Down Payment Make Sense?

January 2, 2019 - If you’re looking at home loan options, especially for the first time, you might wonder why some buyers choose to pay more out of pocket up front on their mortgage loans rather than making the bare minimum down payment and financing closing costs.

FHA.com Reviews

FHA.com is a one-stop resource for homebuyers who want to make the best decisions when it comes to their mortgage. With our detailed, mobile-friendly site, individuals can access information about different FHA products, the latest loan limits, and numerous other resources to make their homebuying experience easier. Take a look at some of the reviews from other FHA.com visitors!