Frequently Asked Questions
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What is the minimum credit score needed to qualify for a loan?
Our FHA Home Loans require a minimum FICO score of 580 with 3.5% down. VA Home Loans require a minimum 600 FICO score. Conventional Home Loans may go as low as 620. Other factors may also affect your eligibility so it's best to talk to our loan pros about your specific needs.
How much do I need for a down payment?
FHA Home Loans require a minimum down payment of 3.5% and seller can pay up to 6% of the sales price towards the buyer's closing costs. VA Home Loans require no down payment with up to 6% seller contribution. FHA Home Loans require no down payment and sellers may also help with closing costs. Conventional Home Loans start as low as 3% down payment with up to 3% seller contribution to closing costs.
What is the difference between interest rate and A.P.R.?
The interest rate is the cost of borrowing money expressed as a percentage rate. It does not reflect fees or any other charges you may have to pay for the loan. An Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is a broader measure of cost to you of borrowing money. The APR reflects not only the interest rate but also the points, origination fees, and certain other charges that you have to pay to get the loan, including certain portions of your closing costs. For that reason, your APR is usually higher than your interest rate.
What is the difference between a mortgage broker and mortgage lender?
A lender is a financial institution that makes loans directly to you. A broker does not lend money. A broker finds a lender. A broker may work with many lenders. For example, a bank has a retail outlet that is open to the public. You work with the bank's loan officer to get a loan directly from them. A mortgage broker acts as retail outlet for many wholesale lenders who do not deal directly with the public. You work with the broker's loan officer to get a loan from a wholesale lender, at no additional cost to you.
What is the advantage of working with a mortgage broker?
Mortgage brokers have access to many different loan programs from many different lenders. You'll work with one loan officer who analyzes your credit profile and shops the lowest interest rate, lowest fees, and best loan terms for you from the many lenders she has access to. Brokers also have less overhead and can charge less fees than most bigger banks. Typical big banks have strict underwriting guidelines making it harder to get you approved and they may ask more from you during the loan process.
Do I qualify for down payment assistance?
Down payment assistance programs are offered by cities throughout Texas, and many have a median income requirement. If your total household income is less than the area median income, then you may qualify for down payment assistance if the house you want to buy is located in the city that offers the program. We are an authorized lender for many Texas cities, and we have helped many of our customers get approved for down payment assistance. Call our loan pros for a free analysis to see if you qualify.
What is difference between prequalification and preapproval?
Prequalification is a lender’s estimate of how much you could be eligible to borrow based on information you supply. Prequalification does not mean you will get the loan. Prequalifications are usually free, and are typically all you need before you go house hunting. Preapproval usually means that the lender is ready to make you a mortgage loan based on the information and documentation you provided at the time you requested a preapproval. The preapproval will say how long it is valid for and may contain some other conditions for you to get the loan.