Here are a few reminders about the Kentucky USDA Rural Housing Service (RHS) Section 502 Guaranteed program which provides very-low-, low- and moderate-income rural residents access to affordable housing finance options with little or no down payment or out-of-pocket costs.
• Eligibility Link – Access the USDA Home page, click here.
• Income – To determine eligibility of an applicant/household, click here.
• Property Eligibility – To determine whether the property is located in a designated rural area, click here.s
30 year fixed rate loan terms only, Purchase or refinance, If refinancing must be existing USDA home loan. No cash out allowed.
• Occupancy – Owner occupied only.
• Maximum Loan Amount-No max loan amount
• Max DTI – GUS approved, generally 45% (front end sensitive)/ Manual 29/41.
• Guaranty Fee/Annual Fee – there is a 1.00%/ 0.35% (monthly).
• Down Payment – Down payment not required but if any cash to close, must be borrowers own funds. Gifts are not allowed.
• Interested Third Party Contributions – An amount of 6% of the sales price can be contributed towards closing costs.
If you meet income eligibility requirements and are looking to settle in a rural area, you might qualify for the KY USDA Rural Housing program. The program guarantees qualifying loans, reducing lenders’ risk and encouraging them to offer buyers 100% loans. That means Kentucky home buyers don’t have to put any money down, and even the “upfront fee” (a closing cost for this type of loan) can be rolled into the financing.
Fico scores usually wanted for this program center around 620 range, with most lenders wanting a 640 score so they can obtain an automated approval through GUS. GUS stands for the Guaranteed Underwriting system, and it will dictate your max loan pre-approval based on your income, credit scores, debt to income ratio and assets.
CREDIT SCORES UNDERWRITING USDA MORTGAGE FOR RURAL HOUSING
This attachment illustrates the approach to reviewing credit history when a loan is
manually underwritten by an approved lender.
Credit score over 680: Perform a basic level of underwriting to confirm the
applicant has an acceptable credit reputation. Perform additional analysis if the
applicant’s credit history has indicators of unacceptable credit as noted in Paragraph 10.7 of this Chapter.
Credit score 679 to 640: Perform a comprehensive level of underwriting.
Underwrite all aspects of the applicant’s credit history to establish the applicant has an
acceptable credit reputation. Credit scores in this range indicate the applicant’s
reputation is uncertain and will require a thorough analysis by the underwriter of the
credit to draw a logical conclusion about the applicant’s commitment to making
payments on the new mortgage obligation. The applicant’s credit history should
demonstrate his or her past willingness and ability to meet credit obligations.
Credit score less than 640: Perform a cautious level of underwriting. Perform a
detailed review of all aspects of the applicant’s credit history to establish the applicant’s
willingness to repay and ability to manage obligations as agreed. Unless there are
extenuating circumstances documented in accordance with this Chapter, a credit score in this range is generally viewed as a strong indication that the applicant does not have an acceptable credit reputation.
Little or no credit history: The lack of credit history on the credit report may be
mitigated if the applicant can document a willingness to pay recurring debts through
other acceptable means such as third party verifications or cancelled checks. Due to
impartiality issues, third party verifications from relatives of household members are not
permissible. Lenders can develop a Non-Traditional Credit Report for applicants who
do not have a credit score in accordance with Paragraph 10.6 of this Chapter.
An applicant with an outstanding judgment obtained by the United States in a
Federal court, other than the United States Tax Court, is not eligible for a guarantee
unless otherwise stated in this Chapter.They also allow for a manual underwrite, which states that the max house payment ratios are set at 29% and 41% respectively of your income.
See link here for more detailed guidelines for credit score, disputed accounts, foreclosures, trade line requirements bankruptcies below:
Indicators of unacceptable credit. The following indicators require documentation
meeting the criteria of Section 10.8 to approve an applicant’s loan request for manually
Foreclosure and Bankruptcy Guidelines
Foreclosure within 3 years:
Including pre-foreclosure activity, such as a pre-foreclosure sale or short sale
in the previous 3 years (refer to Attachment 10-B for additional guidance);
Bankruptcy within 3 years:
Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged in the previous 3 years;
An elapsed period of less than 3 years, but not less than 12 months, may
be acceptable if the applicant meets the criteria of Section 10.8 of this
Chapter 13 bankruptcy that has yet to complete repayment (repayment plan in
progress) or has completed payment in the most recent 12 months.
Plans that are completed for 12 months or greater do not require a credit
exception in accordance with Section 10.8;
Late mortgage payments if any mortgage trade line during the most recent 12
months shows 1 or more late payments of greater than 30 days
In an effort to minimize future risk of open collections left unpaid, the lender will
consider the following during the capacity analysis of the loan request, regardless of the
method utilized to underwrite:
1) Determine if the total outstanding balance of all collections accounts of all
applicants is equal to or greater than $2,000. Unless excluded by state law,
collection accounts of a non-purchasing spouse in a community property state are
included in the cumulative balance of all collections.
2) Remove all medical collections and all types of charge off accounts from the total
balance. Medical collections and charge off accounts must be clearly identifiable
on the credit report.
3) If the remaining outstanding balance of collection accounts are equal to or greater
than $2,000, any of the following actions will apply:
a. Payment in full of all collection accounts at or prior to closing.
b. Payment arrangements are made with each creditor for each collection
account remaining outstanding. A letter from the creditor or evidence on
the credit report is required to validate the payment arrangements. The
agreed upon monthly payment for each outstanding collection account
will be included in the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio.
c. In the absence of a payment arrangement, the lender will utilize in the
debt-to-income ratio a calculated monthly payment. For each collection
utilize 5% of the outstanding balance to represent the monthly payment.
They loan requires no down payment, and the current mortgage insurance is 1% upfront, called a funding fee, and .35% annually for the monthly mi payment. Since they recently reduced their mi requirements, USDA is one of the best options out there for home buyers looking to buy in a rural area.
A rural area typically will be any area outside the major cities of Louisville, Lexington, Paducah, Bowling Green, Richmond, Frankfort, and parts of Northern Kentucky.
There is also a max household income limits with most cutoff starting at $87,000 for a family of four, and up to $115,000 for a family of five or more.
Kentucky FHA, VA, USDA & Rural Housing, KHC and Fannie Mae mortgage loans.
Senior Loan Officer