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Today’s Rates for First Time Homebuyers in Oregon

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Mortgage rates are at 3.00% for the 30 year fixed loan program and at 2.56% for the 15 year fixed. As for variable rates, the 5/1 ARM rate currently stands at 4.56%. Check out FHA and VA rates as well if you are doing low or no down payments.

Oregon First Time Home Buyer Checklist

1. Weigh 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. 

2. Get to know 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. 

3. Request interest rate quotes from different lenders licensed in Oregon. Choose one who not only provides a great offer, but carries a high rating from the Better Business Bureau.

4. 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. 

5. Formulate your livable 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. 

6 Begin home shopping, but in the process 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, an Oregon 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 Oregon page of the FHA website.

No Down Payment Loans Through USDA

The United States Department of Agriculture backs home loans for zero down to Oregon 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 Portland, Corvallis, and Eugene 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 

Oregon Grant and Assistance Programs

The Oregon Housing and Community Services department offers two loan options to Oregon first time home buyers, and with no area limits so popular cities like Portland and Eugene are eligible within specified target areas. The options:

Cash Advantage: Participants receive a low interest rate on their loan as well as a 3% grant to assist them with completing the home financing process. The 3% cash gift is calculated from the loan amount and enables borrowers to cover closing costs. It cannot be used toward the down payment. 

Rate Advantage: Borrowers receive the lowest interest rates available in order to help them consistently maintain their monthly payments.

To learn more about your eligibility, visit the Oregon Housing and Community Services page for low rate loans and the Cash Advantage closing cost assistance program. 

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user suit Lenders in: Oregon.

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