Today’s Rates for First Time Homebuyers in Nebraska
Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Mortgage rates are at 4.50% for the 30 year fixed loan program and at 3.71% for the 15 year fixed. As for variable rates, the 5/1 ARM rate currently stands at 4.25%. Check out FHA and VA rates as well if you are doing low or no down payments.
Nebraska First Time Home Buyer Checklist
Decide on your loan program options. If you're moving to an eligible area, you may qualify for a zero down payment loan through USDA. Veterans may be eligible for VA loans, which do not require cash down. The content in the paragraphs below should give you an idea of where you may fall.
Get familiar with your credit score. Your credit should fall somewhere above 600, but few lenders accept scores in the high 500s. If your credit score needs a boost, work on improving it before you try to take out a mortgage. Once annually, you're able to request a free credit report from the three major credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian or TransUnion.
Shop interest rates from different lenders in your part of Nebraska. Choose one who not only provides a great offer, but carries a high rating from the Better Business Bureau.
Get pre-approved. Once you've picked a lender, provide income documentation with your last two pay stubs and tax returns from the past two years.
Determine a budget. You could be pre-approved for a loan amount that is bigger than you had anticipated, but do not base affordability on the sum provided. Remember - pre-approvals are not guaranteed, and only you know what you can truly afford.
Begin home shopping. Be sure to avoid making extravagant purchases, taking out new installment loans, or anything else that could weaken your financial standing. Lenders will check your accounts again before closing your loan.
Low Down Payment Loans Through FHA
If you’re a first time home buyer without a lot to put down, a Nebraska FHA loan may accommodate you. FHA loans are backed by the government and designed to help home buyers with limited upfront funds receive financing.
Down payment: 3.5%
Minimum acceptable credit score: 580 (varies)
Mortgage insurance: Upfront (1.75% loan amount) and monthly
Property guidelines apply and are verified via home inspection
You can find additional information about FHA loans on the Nebraska page of the FHA website.
No Down Payment Loans Through USDA
The United States Department of Agriculture backs home loans for zero down to Nebraska home buyers looking to move to or live in rural areas. Find out if your buying city is eligible by searching the USDA's property map. Note that popular areas like Lincoln are not eligible.
Down payment: None required; financing up to 102% available depending on home appraisal
Minimum acceptable credit score: 620
Mortgage insurance: Upfront (2% loan amount) and monthly
Income maximums apply
Nebraska Grant and Assistance Programs
The Nebraska Investment Finance Authority, or NIFA, offers special incentives to first time home buyers, including
First Home Plus: Borrowers benefit from a low interest rate loan, given they meet income requirements and have a credit score of at least 640. Note that the program is not necessarily only for first time home buyers in Nebraska, because buyers who have not owned in the last three years may still qualify.
First Home Focused: If you're living in or moving to Adams, Douglas, Jefferson, Lancaster, or Scotts Bluff County, and have at least a 640 credit score, you may be eligible for the First Home Focused loan, which provides a low interest rate loan to participants.
Homebuyer Assistance (HBA): Borrowers receive up to 5% in down payment assistance funds via the facilitation of a short, second mortgage. A $1,000 minimum investment is required of all participants. Credit and income restrictions apply, so check your HBA eligibility.
Lenders in: Nebraska.