Conventional loans and FHA loans are two popular options for first-time and repeat home buyers, or for current homeowners who want to refinance their mortgage. The main distinction between the two is that FHA loans are backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government, while conventional loans are not.
Conventional Home Loan. Conventional home loans have a lot of their own advantages despite the requirement of a higher credit score. First, there is no required up front mortgage insurance as there is with an FHA. Secondly, if the home buyer borrows less than 80% of the value (20% or more down payment) then a mortgage insurance premium isn’t.
There are several differences between an FHA loan vs conventional mortgage in the area of down payment. First, FHA only requires a 3.5% down payment. A conventional loan may require a 5% down payment, or it may require as much as 20% down depending on various factors.
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Home loans for first time home buyers have been marketed relentlessly over the past couple of years with the slew of millennial home buyers entering the market. While a first time buyer has EVERY option available to them (FHA, VA, Conventional, USDA, etc.), there are two primary options available.
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