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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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October 16, 2019
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FHA.com is a privately owned website, is not a government agency, and does not make loans.

Higher Credit Helps You Get a Loan

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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

FHA Texas One-Time Close Construction Loans

September 20, 2019 - FHA One-Time Close construction loans are an important option to consider for those looking for a home in Texas. That market is an excellent place to consider building a home from the ground up with a One-Time Close (OTC) mortgage.

What Size Home Can I Buy With My FHA Mortgage?

September 17, 2019 - There’s more than one factor at work in that particular equation, as we’ll see. Did you know you can buy or renovated a multi-unit property with an FHA mortgage? Or rent out the unused living spaces in your newly purchased property?

Are You Ready for an FHA One-Time Close Construction Loan?

September 15, 2019 - There are important things to consider before you start discussing your needs with a participating FHA lender, and coming into this mortgage loan process fully prepared will definitely save you a great deal of time.

FHA Home Loan Approval Rules About Debt Ratios

September 13, 2019 - What does it take to get FHA home loan approval? Part of the equation is in your credit scores, another part is your employment history, but an equally crucial portion involves the amount of debt you carry versus the amount of income you have.

Reasons to Buy a Home With an FHA Mortgage

September 10, 2019 - If your rent every month is costing you more than a mortgage would, does it make more sense to buy? You may also be tired of being unable to make changes to your living space and want the freedom of home ownership rather than the insecurity of lease expirations, increasing rent, etc.