May 21, 2019

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FHA Loan FICO Score Questions And Answers

FHA Home Loan FICO Score Questions And Answers

Every new borrower has FHA home loan FICO score questions they need answers to; do you know what the minimum FHA-required FICO score is to be approved for a new home loan? Do you know what it takes to be approved for maximum financing? Keep reading, there are many answers below.

What Are The FHA Loan FICO Score Requirements For Loan Approval?

The minimum FHA FICO score requirements for new purchase home loans are:

-580 or higher = eligible for maximum financing with a 3.5% minimum down payment

-500 to 579 = eligible for an FHA mortgage loan with a 10% minimum down payment

The FHA minimum FICO score requirements listed above DO NOT include applicable lender standards. You will need to speak with your participating FHA loan officer to see if higher FICO score requirements apply-depending on the borrower’s credit history, FICO scores, lender standards, and other variables, your FICO score requirements may be higher than those listed here.

When Might An FHA Loan Require Higher FICO Scores?

FHA loan credit qualifications may be more strict if you are interested in options such as the FHA One-Time Close construction loan. FHA loan minimums apply across the board, but the lender’s standards may (and often are) higher than these minimums. T

his is permitted under the FHA loan rules as long as those standards are applied in accordance with federal law (up to and including Fair Housing Act regulations). Ask your loan officer what’s applicable for your specific financial needs and goals for the new loan.

Are FHA FICO Score Requirements Are Only Standard For Loan Approval?

FICO scores are only part of the picture-your history as a credit risk, your employment, and debt ratio will all factor into the lender’s thought processes when it’s time to approve or deny a loan. In some cases, the lender’s actions are dictated by FHA loan minimum standards, in other cases it may be lender standards that influence the process more depending on circumstances.

Either way, don’t rely simply on the FICO score number as an indicator of your ability to get your loan approved. Your last 12 months of loan repayment history and other factors will be very important We will continue to examine these rules in our next blog post.

Bruce Reichstein - Staff Writer

By Bruce Reichstein

April 4, 2018

Bruce Reichstein has spent over three decades as an experienced FHA and VA home loan mortgage banker and underwriter where he was responsible for funding “Billions” in government backed mortgage loans. He is the Managing Editor for where he educates homeowners on the specific guidelines for obtaining FHA guaranteed home loans.

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About was launched in 2010 by seasoned mortgage professionals wanting to educate homebuyers about the guidelines for FHA insured mortgage loans. Popular FHA topics include credit requirements, FHA loan limits, mortgage insurance premiums, closing costs and many more. The authors have written thousands of blogs specific to FHA mortgages and the site has substantially increased readership over the years and has become known for its “FHA News and Views”.

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