Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Guidelines

In this blog, we will cover and discuss the difference between government versus conventional mortgage guidelines. Many homebuyers often get confused when shopping for a mortgage about the difference between government versus conventional loans. Government loans are for owner-occupant primary homes. You cannot finance second homes or investment properties with government mortgages.

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What Are Conventional Loans

Conventional loans are not backed and/or insured by a government agency. However, conventional loans need to conform to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac agency guidelines. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are government-sponsored enterprises or GSE. We will discuss the role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on later paragraphs. In this article, we will explain the differences in the various home mortgage programs available for homebuyers and which program may benefit borrowers.

Types of Mortgage Loan Program

There are several mortgage loan programs for home buyers. Many homebuyers, especially first-time homebuyers, often ask the pros and cons of Government Versus Conventional Mortgage. Government Loans are home loans that are originated by private lenders but backed by the government. Government-backed mortgages are for primary owner-occupant homes only.

Second Homes and Investment Home Mortgage Guidelines

Second-home and investment properties are not eligible for government-backed mortgages. Conventional loans do allow for a second home and investment property financing. Conventional loans are not government-backed mortgages. Conventional Loans are private home mortgages originated and funded by banks and/or mortgage companies. If they are not government loans, why do conventional loans need to follow Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac Agency Guidelines? Mortgage bankers will use their warehouse line of credit to fund the loans they close. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the two mortgage giants in the nation that purchase loans from lenders on the secondary mortgage market.

The Role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

The role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is to provide liquidity in the mortgage markets. Lenders sell mortgage loans after they close and fund the loan on the secondary market. Lenders will pay their warehouse line of credit with the proceeds from the loans they sell on the secondary mortgage market. By paying down the warehouse line of credit, lenders can then originate and fund more loans. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will only purchase mortgage loans that conform to their agency mortgage guidelines. This is why conventional loans are called conforming loans. In the following paragraphs, we will discuss and cover Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Guidelines.

What Is The Mission of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on Conventional Loans

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the two mortgage giants in the nation and are government-sponsored enterprises (GSE). The role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is to provide liquidity in the mortgage markets so lenders can offer home mortgages with a lower down payment at low mortgage rates. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac promote homeownership to hard-working Americans. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the two largest buyers of mortgages from banks and mortgage companies.

How Does The Secondary Mortgage Market Mortgage Process Work?

In order for Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac to buy mortgages by lenders, the mortgages they purchase need to conform to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac Agency Guidelines. This is why conventional loans are often referred to as conforming loans. Lenders use their warehouse line of credit to fund mortgages. Once lenders fund a home mortgage, they now need to sell the mortgage they funded on the secondary mortgage market. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the two mortgage giants in the nation and the biggest buyers of mortgages in the secondary mortgage market.

Warehouse Line of Credit Mortgage Process

Warehouse Line of Credit Mortgage Process

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will purchase the mortgages that conform. With the proceeds the lenders get, they pay down their warehouse line of credit. With paying down the warehouse line of credit, mortgage lenders can make more loans and repeat the process. If lenders cannot pay down their warehouse line of credit, they would not be able to originate and fund more loans. Purchasing mortgages is how Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac provide liquidity in the mortgage markets.

Types Of Government-Backed Mortgages

There are three types of government loans.

  • FHA
  • VA
  • USDA

Conventional loans are often called conforming loans. This is because conventional loans need to conform to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac Mortgage Guidelines.

In this blog, we will explain, discuss, and cover the differences between government-backed versus conventional loans. We will also cover the pros and cons of government versus conventional mortgage loans and their agency guidelines.

Advantages Of Government-Backed Loans

Government Loans allow low down payments and low mortgage rates. Lenders can originate and fund FHA, VA, USDA loans with little to no down payment and offer very low mortgage rates due to the government guarantee. VA and USDA loans do not require any down payment. FHA, one of the most popular loan programs in the United States requires a 3.5% down payment for borrowers with at least 580 credit scores.

FHA Loans With 500 Credit Scores

Borrowers with under 580 credit scores down to 500 FICO can qualify for FHA Loans with a 10% down payment. The reason why lenders can offer government loans with little to no down payment with lower credit scores is in the event borrowers default on their government loans, the government agency will insure part of the loss. Government loans also have much more lenient when it comes to credit. Borrowers with prior bankruptcy and/or foreclosure can qualify for government loans just 2 to 3 years after their discharge and/or housing event date.

Waiting Period After Bankruptcy And Housing Event On Government Versus Conventional Mortgage

Waiting period requirements after bankruptcy and housing events are shorter on government versus conventional loans. Here are the waiting period requirements on government loans:

  • HUD requires a two year waiting period after the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy discharged date to qualify for FHA loans
  • VA requires a two year waiting period after bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, short sale
  • HUD requires a three year waiting period after foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, short sale to qualify for FHA loans
  • USDA requires a three year waiting period after bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, short sale
  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac require a four-year waiting period after a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged date and Chapter 13 dismissal date to qualify for conventional loans
  • There is a four-year waiting period to qualify for conventional loans after a deed in lieu of foreclosure and/or short-sale
  • There is a seven-year waiting period after a foreclosure to qualify for conventional loans
  • There is a two-year waiting period to qualify for conventional loans after a Chapter 13 bankruptcy discharged date
  • Borrowers in an active Chapter 13 Bankruptcy repayment plan can qualify for VA and FHA Loans one year into the repayment plan with Trustee Approval

There is no waiting period after a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy discharged date for VA and FHA Home Loans.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Guidelines: Benefits Of Conventional Loans

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage

There are instances where borrowers need to go with conforming versus government loans. Borrowers with high student loan balances may need to opt with going with conventional loans. Conventional loans are the only loan program that allows Income-Based Repayment (IBR). Many borrowers with student loan balances of over $100,000 or more will have a hard time qualifying for government loans.

Mortgage With High Outstanding Student Loans

FHA and USDA require 0.50% of the outstanding student loan balance to be used as a hypothetical debt if the student loan is in deferment. VA loans do exempt deferred student loans that have been deferred longer than 12 months. Otherwise, VA requires to take 5% of the student loan balance and divide that figure by 12. The resulting figure will be the hypothetical student loan payments used in debt to income ratio calculations. Medical doctors, dentists, nurses, pharmacists, lawyers, business executives, and educators are folks with very high student loan balances.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Guidelines: Mortgage Included In Bankruptcy

Borrowers with a prior mortgage included in their bankruptcy may need to opt to go with conventional loans. Conventional loans are the only mortgage program that will go off a four-year waiting period from the date of the bankruptcy if consumers included a mortgage or mortgages in their bankruptcy. The mortgage cannot be reaffirmed after the bankruptcy. The date of the housing event (foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, short sale) date can happen after the discharged date of the bankruptcy. FHA, VA, and USDA will go off the date of the housing event and not the discharged date of the bankruptcy. VA Guidelines on mortgage included in bankruptcy is a two-year waiting period after the recorded date of the foreclosure. However, if the prior mortgage was a prior VA Loan, this may hurt their available entitlement. It is important for borrowers to have rebuilt and reestablished credit after bankruptcy and/or foreclosure to get an approve/eligible per the automated underwriting system (AUS). Late payments after bankruptcy and/or foreclosure are frowned upon by lenders and may be difficult to get an AUS Approval.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Guidelines: Qualifying For A Mortgage With A Lender With No Overlays

Borrowers who need to qualify for government and/or conventional loans with a national mortgage company licensed in multiple states with no lender overlays, please contact us at Gustan Cho Associates at 262-716-8151 or text us for a faster response. Or email us at [email protected]  We are also experts in non-QM mortgages. Some of our most popular non-QM and alternative finance mortgage programs are 12-month bank statement mortgages, mortgage one day out of bankruptcy, asset-depletion mortgages, fix and flip loans, non-QM jumbo mortgages, and dozens of other non-QM home loan programs. The team at Gustan Cho Associates is available 7 days a week, on evenings, weekends, and holidays.

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines And Benefits

The differences between Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines And Benefits for borrowers. There are three types of government loans:

  • FHA Loans
  • VA Loans
  • USDA Loans

We will cover the differences between conventional versus government mortgage guidelines in the following paragraphs. There are times when borrowers may need to go with conventional versus government loans.

What Are Government Loans

What Are Government Loans

Government loans are owner-occupant home loans for borrowers of primary residences originated and funded by private lenders. It is often called government loans. This is because they are partially insured and guaranteed by a government agency. FHA, VA, and USDA will partially insure and guarantee lenders against the loss they sustained in the even the borrowers’ default and foreclose on their government loans… Due to this government guarantee, lenders can offer borrowers low to zero down payment requirements at low mortgage rates.] Conventional Loans are not government loans. They are private loans.

What Are Conventional Loans

Conventional Loans are often referred to as conforming loans. This is because of the need to conform to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac Guidelines. Why do Conventional Loans need to conform to Fannie/Freddie Agency Guidelines if they are private loans?  This is because lenders sell conforming loans on the secondary market to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac once they fund the loan.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Lending Guidelines

If the loan does not conform to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac Lending Guidelines, Fannie/Freddie will not purchase the conventional loans. This is the reason why lenders require borrowers to conform to Fannie/Freddie Guidelines. In this article, we will cover and discuss Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines and Benefits for borrowers.

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines On Minimum Credit Score Requirements

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines on credit score requirements is higher. The minimum credit score requirement to qualify on conventional loans is 620 FICO. HUD, the parent of FHA, requires a minimum credit score of 580 FICO for homebuyers needing to qualify for a 3.5% down payment FHA Loan. USDA generally requires a 580 credit score. The Department of Veterans Affairs (The VA) has no minimum credit score requirement. As long as borrowers can get an approve/eligible per the automated underwriting system (The AUS), borrowers do not need to meet a minimum credit score requirement. Gustan Cho Associates have closed countless VA Loans with credit scores in the low 500s.

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines On Waiting Period Requirements After Bankruptcy And A Housing Event

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines in qualifying for a mortgage differs. Here are the waiting period requirements to qualify for conventional loans after bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, and short-sale versus government loans. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac require a 4-year waiting period after Chapter 7 Bankruptcy to qualify for conventional loans. HUD and the VA require a 2-year waiting period after Chapter 7 Bankruptcy discharge date. USDA requires a three-year waiting period after Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge date.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Included In Bankruptcy Waiting Period Requirements

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage Included In Bankruptcy Waiting Period Requirements

Fannie/Freddie Require a 2-year waiting period after Chapter 13 Bankruptcy discharged date to qualify for conventional loans. For borrowers with a prior mortgage included in the bankruptcy, there is a four-year waiting period after the discharge date of the bankruptcy to qualify for conventional loans.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage on Housing Events Guidelines

The foreclosure and/or housing event date after the bankruptcy does not matter. With FHA loans, if the borrower had a prior mortgage included in their bankruptcy, there is a three-year waiting period from the recorded housing event date to qualify. FHA and VA do not have any waiting period requirements after Chapter 13 Bankruptcy discharged date.

Government Versus Conventional Mortgage on Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Guidelines

Borrowers in an active Chapter 13 Bankruptcy repayment plan can qualify for VA and FHA loans during the repayment period without the bankruptcy being discharged with Trustee Approval. There is a four-year waiting period after Chapter 13 dismissal date on conventional loans. There is no waiting period after Chapter 13 dismissal date on FHA and VA Loans. Non-QM Mortgages have no waiting period requirements after bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, or short-sale.

Conventional Versus Government Mortgage Guidelines After Housing Event

There is a four-year waiting period after a deed in lieu of foreclosure and/or short-sale to qualify for conventional loans. The waiting period is 7 years after a regular foreclosure to qualify for conventional loans. FHA and USDA require a 3-year waiting period after a foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, and short-sale to qualify for FHA and USDA loans. The VA requires a two-year waiting period after foreclosure, deed in lieu of foreclosure, and short-sale to qualify for VA loans.

Cases Where Borrowers Need To Go With Conventional Versus FHA Loans

FHA and Conventional Loans are the top two most popular loan programs in the United States. There are instances where borrowers need to go with Conventional versus FHA loans. High-Balance student loans:

  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac allow Income-Based Repayment Plans to be used
  • HUD does not allow IBR Payment on FHA Loans
  • Borrowers with higher student loan balances may need to go with conventional versus FHA Loans
  • FHA requires 1.0% of the student loan balance to be used as a monthly hypothetical debt for those who have student loans in deferment and/or are in an IBR plan
  • Or the borrower can get a hypothetical monthly amortized payment over an extended-term from the student loan provider in writing

This can be used in lieu of the 1.0% of the outstanding student loan balance on FHA loans.

Mortgage Included In Bankruptcy:

Mortgage Included in Bankruptcy Guidelines

Mortgage Included in Bankruptcy Guidelines

Borrowers who have a prior mortgage included in the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy may need to go with conventional versus FHA loans if the lienholder did not change the title to the lender’s name until an extended date after the discharge date. With Conventional loans, there is a four-year waiting period after the discharged date. The housing event date does not matter. With FHA loans, the three-year waiting period does not start until the actual recorded date of the housing event. The discharged date of the bankruptcy does not count. For more information about the contents of this article and/or other mortgage-related topics, please contact us at Gustan Cho Associates at 262-716-8151 or text us for a faster response. Or email us at [email protected]

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