They're 3 basic items that a borrower needs to show a lender in order to get approved for a mortgage in Kentucky for 2023.
You need income. You need to be able to afford the home. But what is acceptable income? Let’s just say that there are two ratios mortgage underwriters look at to qualify you for mortgage payment:
First Ratio – The first ratio, top ratio or housing ratio. Basically, that means out of all the gross monthly income you make, that no more that X percent of it can go to your housing payment. The housing payment consists of Principle, Interest, Taxes and Insurance.
Whether you escrow or not every one of these items are factored into your ratio. There are a lot of exceptions to how high you can go, but let’s just say that if your ratio is 33% or less, generally, across the board, you’re safe.
Second Ratio- The second ratio, bottom ratio or debt ratio includes the housing payment, but also adds all of the monthly debts that the borrower has. So, it includes housing payment as well as every other debt that a borrower may have.
This would include, Auto loans, credit cards, student loans, personal loans, child support, alimony…. basically any consistent outgoing debt that you’re paying on. Again, if you’re paying less than 45% of your gross monthly income to all of the debts, plus your proposed housing payment, then……generally, you’re safe. You can go a lot higher in this area, but there are a lot of caveats when increasing your back ratio.
What qualifies as income?
Basically, it’s income that has at least a proven, two-year history of being received and pretty high assurances that the income is likely to continue for at least three years. What’s not acceptable? Unverifiable cash income, short term income and income that’s not likely to continue like unemployment income, student loan aid, VA education benefits, or short-term disability are not allowed for a mortgage loan.
What the mortgage underwriter is looking for here is how much can you put down and secondly, how much will you have in reserves after the loan is made to help offset any financial emergencies in the future.
Do you have enough assets to put the money forth to qualify for the down payment that the particular program asks for?
The only 100% financing or no money down loans still available in Kentucky for home buyers are available through USDA, VA, and KHC or Kentucky Housing Loans. Most other home buyers that don't qualify for the no money down home loans mentioned above, will turn to the FHA program.
FHA loans currently requires a 3.5% down payment and Fannie Mae, or Conventional loans require a 3% to 5% down payment. The more you put down, the better your rate and terms usually and your chances of qualifying.
Kentucky Home buyers that have access to putting down at least 5% or more, will usually turn to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac mortgage programs so they can get better pricing when it comes to mortgage insurance.
These assets need to be validated through bank accounts, 401k or retirements account and sometimes gifts from relatives or employer. Can you borrow the down payment? Sometimes.
Generally, if you’re borrowing a secured loan against a secured asset you can use that. But rarely can cash be used as an asset.
FHA will allow for gifts from relatives for down payments with little as 3.5% down but Fannie Mae will require a 20% down payment when a gift is being used for the down payment on the home.
The down payment scenarios listed above are for Kentucky Primary Residences only. There are stricter down payment requirements for investment homes made in Kentucky.
580 to 620 is the bottom score (again with few exceptions) that lenders will permit. Below a 620, then you have to look at doing a FHA loan or VA loan if you are a veteran. Even at 620, people consider you a higher risk that other folks and are going to penalize you or your borrower with a more expensive loan. 720 is when you really start to get in the “as a lender we love you” credit score. 760 is even better.
Watch your credit scores carefully. You have three credit scores, and the lender will take your middle score. For example, let's say you have a 590 on Transunion, 679 on Experian, and a 618 on Equifax. Then your middle qualifying credit score will be 618 credits score.
If you absolutely cannot get your credit scores up to 620, then FHA will be a good option for you. FHA states that if your fico credit score is 580 or above, they will allow for a 3.5% down payment, and if below 580, you will need 10% down payment.
There are a lot of mortgage lenders that will not go below 580 to 620 range, so keep that in mind when you are shopping for a mortgage lender, because they create credit overlays.
Kentucky FHA Mortgage Loans currently requires 3 years removal from a foreclosure or short sale and 2 years on a bankruptcy with good reestablished credit.
Kentucky Fannie Mae Mortgage Loans currently requires 4 years removal from a bankruptcy, and 7 years on a foreclosure.
Kentucky VA Mortgage Loans currently requires 2 years removal from a bankruptcy or foreclosure with good, reestablished credit.
Kentucky USDA loans require 3 years removal from bankruptcy and foreclosure with good reestablished credit.
Which credit score is used to qualify for a Mortgage loan in Kentucky?
Mortgage Loan Officer
Individual NMLS ID #57916
American Mortgage Solutions, Inc.
10602 Timberwood Circle
Louisville, KY 40223
Company NMLS ID #1364
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