Kentucky USDA Rural Development Loan Program:

Single Family Housing Guaranteed

The following is a list of the “nuts and bolts” of the Kentucky USDA Rural Development Loan Program:

  • The house has to be located in a Kentucky USDA Rural Development Loan Program: area designated as an USDA eligible area.
  • To determine the USDA approved designated areas, reference the following USDA map instructions:
    • Go the USDA Rural Development Website
    • On the top left hand side, click “Single Family Housing Guaranteed”
    • Click “Accept”
    • Enter the property address to determine if a specific house or general area is located in an USDA eligible area
  • The household income must be moderate as determined by USDA. The USDA Loan evaluates household income, which includes the combined income of all adults living in the household; even if they are not on the mortgage loan. Click here to determine your household income eligibility.
  • If it appears that the household income exceeds the moderate income thresholds established by USDA, do not throw in the towel just yet. USDA allows for deductions for child care and medical expenses as well as for children, students, and elderly members of the household that will be living in the USDA financed property.
  • This is not a farmer’s loan. As a matter of fact, the property cannot have any income producing capabilities, and when the land value of the property exceeds 30% of the appraised value additional requirements must be met.
  • The house has to be in fairly good condition. The appraisal type being utilized is an FHA appraisal, so make sure that there are not any safety related challenges(i.e. missing banisters, peeling paint, exposed electric).
  • This is a true no money down loan program. Or stated differently, you do not need a down payment.
  • While there is a monthly mortgage insurance premium (or prorated portion of an Annual Fee), the cost of the monthly mortgage insurance is 59% less than a comparable FHA Loan. This makes the USDA loan more affordable than an FHA Loan when analyzing down payment requirements and monthly mortgage payments.
  • The seller can pay all closing costs and pre-paids (i.e. escrows). Often the home buyer’s only out-of-pocket cost as part of the purchase transaction is approximately $550 for the appraisal report.
  • If the house appraises for more than the purchase price, the difference can be used to pay for closing costs and pre-paids (i.e. escrows). Only the USDA Loan program allows for closing costs to be rolled on top of the purchase price.
  • USDA has no restriction on whether you are a first time home buyer or move-up home buyer.
  • This loan program is only for primary residence (i.e. no second home or investment properties).
  • You should not own any other functional property; although there are some circumstances under which USDA may waive this requirement.
  • The preferred minimum credit score is 640. However, if you have a documented rent history, no late payments on your credit cards, and no new collections within the last 12 months, a credit score as low as 620 may be considered.
  • All property types including single family homes, town homes, modular, and even condominiums qualify for this loan program. Manufacture homes such as single and doublewides constructed prior to January 1, 2006 do not qualify.
  • There is no maximum mortgage amount, but the house does have to be considered moderate in a size

Kentucky Rural Housing Development Mortgage Guide for USDA Loans

Kentucky USDA Rural Housing Mortgage Lender

 Kentucky Rural Development Mortgage Guide

  • 30 year fixed rate only for Purchases and Existing USDA loans Refinances.
  • Zero down Mortgage loan with no loan limits!
  • Upfront funding fee is 1.0% and annual mi fee is .35% (very low compared to FHA)
  • Typically cannot own other real estate. There are exceptions to this.
  • You do not have to be a first-time home buyer in Kentucky
  • Can refinance existing USDA loan as long as lowering rate by 1% and can do without an appraisal. There are overlays to this by lenders.
  • Closing costs and prepaids can be paid by seller but must be put into contract
  • Closing costs may be financed into the loan up to the appraised value.
  • You will need two credit trade lines reporting at least for 12 months on your credit file. They don’t have to be open and active. Just reporting on your credit report.
  • All Guaranteed Mortgage Loans are ran through GUS. GUS stands for the Guaranteed Underwriting System. USDA and their underwriters use this system to pre-approve you. They review credit score/history, income, debt to income ratio and assets to determine your loan eligibility. If your credit score is below 640 or your debt to income ratio is over 45%, it will get a refer and you will find most lenders will not approve the loan.
  • Some lenders will do a credit score down to 600, but they will want a lot of documentation to overturn the refer and compensating factors for the lower credit score. They typically will need to verify rent for last 12 months, with no lates, cash payments are not acceptable, and debt to income ratios are set at 29% and 41% respectively. Reserves are typically helpful too on lower credit scores, so keep in that in mind, if you have money in a savings account, for a rainy day fund, this will help sometimes get the loan approved.
  • If you have access to 20% down payment you cannot use the USDA Program. Money in a retirement account does not account toward the 20% rule.
  • Properties must be located in an eligible area of Kentucky. Typically the large metro areas of Kentucky including the following: all of Jefferson County,  all of Fayette County, Owensboro, Paducah, Hopkinsville, Bowling Green, Richmond, Frankfort and Northern KY cities of Covington, Florence, Erlanger, Beechwood, Richwood are not eligible
USDA Eligible Areas In Northern Kentucky for Boone, Kenton, Campbell, Grant Counties
  • Independence
  • Burlington
  • Hebron
  • Highland Heights
  • Walton
  • Alexandria
  • Cold Springs
  • All Of Grant County, Pendleton County And Owen County

Search for Kentucky USDA Eligible Properties 

A property must be located in an eligible area in order to use a USDA loan to purchase a home.  Contrary to belief, Rural Development loans are not only for farms or very rural homes.  

Actually, a property with an operating and income producing farm is not eligible for these loans!


 Kentucky USDA Rural Max Income Limits:

  • New Income limits for most counties (*) in Kentucky are $90,200 for a  4 unit household and household families of five or more + can make up to  $119,200.
  • The Northern Kentucky Counties (***) of Boon, Kenton, Campbell, Bracken, Gallatin, and Pendleton are $99,500 for a household of four or less and up to $129,400 for a family of five or more.
  • With the new changes for 2019 USDA Income limits, the Jefferson County Louisville, KY Metro area (**) saw an increase of $90,200 for a family of four and up to $119,100 for a family of five or more. The metro area includes Oldham, Bullitt, Spencer, Hardin, Larue and Meade are including in these higher income limits for USDA loans.Remember,  Jefferson County Kentucky, Fayette County Kentucky are not eligible for USDA loans.,Below is the website where you can check and make sure

Some More Facts about a Kentucky USDA loan:


It’s a two step approval process.  The chosen USDA lender must first underwrite the file and get it approved based on the income, assets, and credit report submitted. Then, the lenders must submit to USDA for a “conditional commitment”.  This conditional commitment is the final loan approval paperwork you are looking for. 


Even though the lender may have approved the file, it still must go to USDA office in Lexington for an assignment to SFH underwriter for the final approval process. They typically are checking the appraisal and income at this stage. There have been instances where the lender would approve the file but USDA would not due to appraisal issues or income and job history. 
This is very rare instances, so keep that in mind when it comes to final loan approval. 

This two-step approval process usually adds 4-6 days to the final loan approval process, so keep that in mind when you are writing up your contract because it takes a little longer to close these loans vs FHA, VA, and Fannie Mae loans.

Well Test Treatments:  Properties with a well as the primary drinking source will require a well water test.  There are local labs to perform this test and the water must pass.

Septic Test: Sometimes they will require the septic tank to be inspected if called for in the appraisal report or home inspection. 

Older Homes: As a general rule, USDA does not like homes older than 100 years old. They will sometimes require a home inspection in addition to the mandatory appraisal on older homes.

USDA Loan After a Short Sale:  A short sale is not the end of the world.  So it is very possible to obtain a USDA loan if 3 years have passed after the short sale.  But a buyer would need re-established good rent and other credit history.

Bankruptcy and Foreclosure:  If the mortgage debt that was foreclosed, was included in a Bankruptcy – then the USDA Home Loan waiting periods after foreclosure “waiting period” of 3 years, starts from the date of the discharge of the Bankruptcy.  Because it can take 6 months or more for Banks to process the Foreclosure, and transfer title, this is a tremendous plus.

RHS Student Loans
Effective immediately for all RHS loans, student loan calculations will be changed to the following
  • Fixed Payment Loans: A permanent amortized, fixed payment may be used when it can be documented that the payment is fixed, the interest rate is fixed, and the repayment term is fixed.
  • Non-Fixed Payment Loans (i.e. deferred, income based, graduated, adjustable, etc.): The payment should be calculated as the greater of 0.5% of the loan balance or the actual payment reflected on the credit report. No additional documentation is required.

Kentucky USDA Rural Housing Loans Direct Programs Interest Rates

What is the interest rate and payback period?

  • Effective January 1, 2022, the current interest rate for Single Family Housing Direct home loans is 2.50% for low-income and very low-income borrowers.
  • Fixed interest rate based on current market rates at loan approval or loan closing, whichever is lower
  • Interest rate when modified by payment assistance, can be as low as 1%
  • Up to 33 year payback period – 38 year payback period for very low income applicants who can’t afford the 33 year loan term

Not the same as the USDA Rural Housing Guaranteed Program. These rates follow the secondary market and change daily like FHA, VA, Conventional Mortgage Loans and set by individual lenders based on lock period, credit score, loan amount, state, and other incentives

the current interest rate for Single Family Housing Direct Home Loans

The USDA 502 Direct Loan Program helps low- and very-low-income applicants in federally-determined rural areas of the state obtain decent, safe and sanitary housing in eligible rural areas by providing payment assistance to increase an applicant’s repayment ability. This payment assistance is a type of subsidy that reduces the mortgage payment. The amount of assistance is determined by the adjusted family income.

A number of factors are considered when determining an applicant’s eligibility for this loan. At a minimum, applicants interested in obtaining a direct loan must have an adjusted income that is at or below the applicable low-income limit for the area where they wish to buy a house and they must demonstrate a willingness and ability to repay debt.

This is a zero down payment loan.

Program Fact Sheet

Program Forms & Resources

Click here for the current rate for the USDA 502 Direct Loan Program

What are Kentucky USDA Home Loans? Do I Qualify?

What are Kentucky USDA Home Loans? Do I Qualify? Deciding between rural and suburban is one of many choices you’ll make along your homeownership journey. And if the countryside is your preference, then you may want to consider applying for a USDA loan. You’…

Source: What are USDA Home Loans? Do I Qualify? – Cape Gazette

Northern Kentucky Mortgage Guidelines for the USDA Rural Housing Loan Home Program

If you are looking to buy a home in Northern Kentucky,  to either own a home on acreage in the country with 100% financing on your home loan with zero down,  then you need to look at the Kentucky USDA Rural Housing Loan Program.

If you are looking to buy a home in Northern Kentucky,  to either own a home on acreage in the country with 100% financing on your home loan with zero down,  then you need to look at the Kentucky USDA Rural Housing Loan Program.

 How Does the USDA Home Loan Work in Northern Kentucky?

Here are some of the Key Financial Elements of the USDA Home Loan in Northern Kentucky:

  • Low to Middle-Income Households are generally eligible – If the Household Income is too high, you may be ineligible.
  • 30 Year Fixed Term Loans at Today’s Low Interest Rates compared to FHA, USDA and other government mortgage loans
  • Qualifying rations are 29% for Housing and 41% for total debt. or possibly higher with a credit score over 640.
  • Rural Development Loan Guarantee Fee applies, currently 1% USDA funding fee and .35% monthly mi premium
  • Zero Cash required for the Down Payment.  If access to 20% down payment, then you cannot use this program.
  • Flexible Credit Guidelines, where non-traditional histories may be accepted. USDA will do a no score loan, but it is very difficult to qualify for so your best bet is to get your credit scores to 620 to 640 range and go from there. You will need two trade lines on the credit report for last 12 months, so no limited credit history is allowed on this program.
  • Eligible properties include: Existing Homes, New Construction, New Manufactured Homes, Modular Homes, and eligible Condos!—No used mobile homes.
  • Eligible Repairs may be included in the loan as well! If home appraises for more than sales price, sometimes you can finance these repairs into the loan.
  • They’re are two income tests. Compliance income and repayment income. See pic below for answers about Northern Kentucky Counties with max income limits for household
  • Home must be in an eligible area. See map below of Northern Kentucky Eligibility for USDA Rural Housing Loans

What Parts of Northern Kentucky Are Eligible for the USDA Home Loan?

With Northern Kentucky being part of the  metro area  of Cincinnati, the USDA has provided a map of the Ineligible Northern part of the Counties of Boone, Kenton, Campbell counties  which means, the remaining southern part of the counties of Boone, Kenton, Campbell being  eligible.  Here is the Northern Kentucky rural housing  map courtesy of the USDA:

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What Parts of Northern Kentucky Are Eligible for the USDA Home Loan?

What are the income limits for a Rural Housing Loan in Northern Kentucky?

Households with 1-4 members have different limits as households with 5-8. Similarly, applicants living in high-cost counties will have a higher income limit than those living in counties with a more average cost of living.

Northern Kentucky Counties
Boone, Kenton, Campbell, Bracken and Pendleton, Gallatin ***
Cincinnati (OH, KY, IN FMR) Household income of 4 or less:

***$99,250
Household income of 5 or more:

***$130,000
All Other Areas $90,300 $119,200

Here are a few more items to check off before looking into this loan or at a particular property:

  • Must be Owner Occupied as the Primary Residence;
  • Home must not be used to produce Income, nor can there be Income Producing Buildings or other Accessories that produce Income on the property; i.e. no working farms or cows, livestock, crops etc. Can be a small hobby farm.
  • No foreclosed homes that  that need a lot of work.
  • Home must be structurally sound and in reasonably good repair and pass FHA standards on an appraisal.
  •  Home  cannot be used for a Rental Property or, be a major fixer




Joel Lobb (NMLS#57916)
Senior  Loan Officer
 
American Mortgage Solutions, Inc.
10602 Timberwood Circle Suite 3
Louisville, KY 40223
Company ID #1364 | MB73346
 


Text/call 502-905-3708
kentuckyloan@gmail.com

Disclaimer: No statement on this site is a commitment to make a loan. Loans are subject to borrower qualifications, including income, property evaluation, sufficient equity in the home to meet Loan-to-Value requirements, and final credit approval. Approvals are subject to underwriting guidelines, interest rates, and program guidelines and are subject to change without notice based on applicant’s eligibility and market conditions. Refinancing an existing loan may result in total finance charges being higher over the life of a loan. Reduction in payments may reflect a longer loan term. Terms of any loan may be subject to payment of points and fees by the applicant  Equal Opportunity Lender. NMLS#57916 http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/
 
— Some products and services may not be available in all states. Credit and collateral are subject to approval. Terms and conditions apply. This is not a commitment to lend. Programs, rates, terms and conditions are subject to change without notice. The content in this marketing advertisement has not been approved, reviewed, sponsored or endorsed by any department or government agency. Rates are subject to change and are subject to borrower(s) qualification.
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