Written By: Theresa Furzland, Op-Ed Writer
Are you aware that there is a zero down program available? And no, it isn’t VA.
The USDA offers the Rural Housing Loan Program that is available to mid and low income persons in rural area. They accomplish this through two programs, the direct program for low income housing options and the guaranteed program which offers home owners Conventional, FHA and VA financing options through many lenders.
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And as this gem of a program is being discovered, more and more lenders are jumping on board and offering the program.
The loan is underwritten and approved by the lender’s underwriter, then submitted to the local USDA office for final approval.
This program offers homebuyers the ability to finance the purchase of the home PLUS closing costs up to the appraised value of the home! And this is offered with a reasonable funding fee and even the new monthly premium makes the program competitive with FHA and VA options. The seller is allowed to pay up to 6% of the Sale Price toward buyers closing costs. Interest rate is also very competitive and therefore makes this an exceptional program to offer.
What surprises me is how this program which has been around as long as I’ve been in the business (and that’s a long time!) has stayed out of the radar. I continually am meeting new agents, buyers and even industry professionals that are not aware of the benefits of the program or that it even exists.
I was recently explaining the program to one of my buyers and he said “you mean the meat guys?” Yes, this is a government backed program insured by the United States Department of Agriculture. Under their Rural Development division, the USDA among many other programs guarantees these mortgage loans.
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If you are not yet familiar with this program, I recommend you take a look at it. Start by visiting the webpagehttp://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rhs/sfh/GSFH_Information/lenders.html and review the summary. You can check income limits and property eligibility on line with the links on this page also. Simply typing in the property address will let you know if it is eligible as a “rural property”. Many small towns will qualify for the program. Check the map here http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.do
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Rural Development offers many other housing programs also. The offices are all locally based which is also a benefit in my opinion.
About The Author
Theresa Furzland - As an op-ed writer, Theresa Furzland has 25+ years of experience ranging from origination, processing, closing and post closing. She is currently a producing Branch Manager for LendSmart Mortgage, LLC and own and operate Willow Wood Mortgage Services, Inc.