Can you get qualified? Even without a substantial down payment saved, you’ll find there are programs—such as the FHA loan program—that make it possible for you to become a first-time home buyer.
Make Your First Home Purchase Your Best-Ever Decision
Take advantage of interest rates. There’s no guarantee that interest rates are going to be this low forever. By getting out of the renter’s game and locking in low interest rates, you can begin a lifelong journey of wealth building.
Use less money down than you imagined. The concept of saving up 20% for money down against a loan can scare some first-time home buyers. But we’ll explain why that doesn’t always have to apply to you.
What You Need to Know About First-Time Home Buying
According to some statistics, a majority of renters who want to buy a home don’t move forward because they’re afraid they don’t qualify! But there are plenty of programs that make it viable for lots of people—even those with poor credit—to qualify.
For many first-time home buyers, the main issue is coming up with the down payment. Many of those who would otherwise buy a home feel they would move their purchase timeline forward if they could make the down payment.
With some first-time home buyers’ terms, it’s possible to pay with a relatively small down payment, much smaller than the usually-expected 20%.
Home sales are as hot as ever, with available homes sometimes going off the market in as little as three weeks in some areas—or even less.
Find favorable terms. When you approach it the right way, your first home purchase can be a door to great terms that help you with your monthly budget.
2 Ways to Use Your FHA 203(k) Loan
Buy a Fixer-Upper (and Fix It Up)
Or... Renovate Your Current Home!
Jamie Shield is such wondeful and very kind person, she helped me the loan and she also took time to help me to get the home insurance. I am very appreciated her time and cotinue to do business with her in the future. I will reffer her to my cousis, and friends if anyone needs to purchase properties.- Vaseng.
Jamie’s services were phenominal. The home I purchased is in the foothills, where it’s difficult to find insurance coverage. Jamie handled every detail.- Anne.
My husband and I met Jamie when we attended a free seminar she was offering for first-time home buyers. Before the seminar, Jamie sent us a simple questionnaire so that she could start to get to know a little about us and our goals, timeline, financial situation, etc. We forgot we even filled it out, but at the end of the seminar, she sat down with us and showed us our pre-approval options (completely tailored to us!) That was just the beginning of how impressed we were with Jamie. As first-time home buyers, she guided us through the entire process and patiently and thoroughly answered our (many) questions. She told us which forms to submit to her ahead of time and communicated seamlessly with our real estate agent to keep us updated on any new developments. Jamie was so proactive and worked her magic with the paperwork behind the scenes so efficiently, that when we found THE house, Jamie’s expertise enabled our deal to close so fast that we ended up getting rent-back from the sellers because they needed more time to pack and move out. THAT is the person I want on my team and I am so glad Jamie offered that class and made such an incredible first-impression. I have no doubt Jamie got us the best deal possible and I will always remember how genuinely happy she was for us when we closed on our home. I highly recommend Jamie!!!- sarah.g
We are so lucky to have found Jamie. From the moment we met her she was incredibly attentive to our needs and always had our best interests in mind. We always felt secure knowing that Jamie was looking out for us and finding us the best deal. She walked us through the process and made everything easily understandable and stress free. Jamie was also ALWAYS available to answer any questions we had at any time of day or night. This was so nice and unexpected and really helped to answer any random questions that came up and alleviate any stress that we had. Jamie was also able to get us approved and ready to go with our loan in under 13 days, which allowed us to close in under 20 days. Jamie even took the time to sit with us at our closing and was there to celebrate getting our keys at our new home. Her time and expertise was SO appreciated and I would not hesitate to recommend Jamie to anyone. She is truly the best! Thanks so much Jamie!!- brandong60.
Jamie has been so patient and helpful throughout our 8 month process. Our loan definitely took longer than normal with a new build but she was with us every step of the way, giving us great advice. She is quick to respond, flexible and available when we need her.- LeslieLiu6.
I am a first time home buyer and Jamie was very patient with me. She was happy to explain every detail with me and was always available. She has a great and positive outlook.- lynnekiriakidi.
Your Renovation Wish List Could Include...
Increase window size
Bring in more natural light
Finish a basement or attic
Create a mother-in-law apartment or guest space
Correct foundational issues
Protect your investment for the long-term
Add a detached garage when one does not exist
There’s room for everyone
Knock down walls
Open up the floor plan to create versatile, welcoming spaces
Flood-proof your property
Add a retaining wall to prevent expensive damage
Repair the pool
Tired of leaks and cracks? Fix the pool & start enjoying it
Expand or refresh the kitchen
Cooking is just more fun in an updated kitchen
Add square footage
Growing your family? Grow your home alongside it!
How Does a Renovation Loan Work?
Depending on the types of repairs you plan to do, you have two options when it comes to securing a FHA 203(k) Renovation Loan: Limited and Standard.
The Limited 203(k) loan
The Limited 203(k) loan is for non-structural or “cosmetic” repairs. It covers up to $35,000 in renovation costs. With a Limited loan, you can do nearly anything that doesn’t affect the home’s structure! Think kitchen and bathroom remodels, carpet and flooring replacement, painting, appliance replacement, and much more.
The Standard 203(k) loan
The Standard 203(k) loan is a loan for projects with repair costs over $35,000. It can be used for structural or non-structural repairs. With a Standard Loan, you have even more flexibility. You can expand the home’s footprint, improve accessibility for differently abled people, and even move the home to a different site.
What Do First-Time Home Buyers Need to Know About Buying a Home?
Why should I buy a home now and not rent until I can save up a massive down payment?
Because there are plenty of options for lowering your down payment! For example, the FHA loan program, which includes loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration, is great for people with low credit scores and not a lot saved for a down payment. That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t save for a down payment—but remain open to all of the options available.
How will I afford my home?
Pre-approval for a first-time home buyer can be a major step in the process, and it’s easier than you think. A pre-approval is essentially a (conditional) promise from a lender that they can offer you the mortgage terms you need to make an offer on a house. This requires an application process that’s much simpler than you might imagine—and great for first-time home buyers who want to shop around and demonstrate to a seller that they’re serious about their offer.
Should I save for a down payment?
Absolutely. Just because you don’t necessarily have to make a 20% down payment on your first home doesn’t mean that you should eschew the process completely. Having a substantial down payment saved never hurts.
I have a low credit score. What kinds of loan programs are there for me?
If you go through the application process and make sure that your payment is in line with what you can fit within your budget (the typical recommendation is a mortgage that takes up no more than 25-33% of your household budget), then you’ll find it’s possible to afford your first home—and the process may be much simpler than you imagined
How do I get pre-approved?
In addition to the FHA loan program as mentioned in the previous answer, you should also look at your qualification for: the VA loan program, the USDA loan program, and even the Good Neighbor Next Door buyer aid program.
What should I do next?
Simple. Click any of our buttons above and find out if your first time home purchase can be as easy as we say it is here. Don’t worry about a low credit score, either—you’ll find that there are plenty of programs out there that can help.