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“Government Mortgages” are loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or guaranteed by the Veterans Administration (VA).

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Loans

The National Housing Act of 1934 established a Federal program to encourage and facilitate home ownership in response to the Depression’s devastating impact on real estate lending.  The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was created to administer the program by providing insurance protection to private lenders who originated mortgages.  FHA is now a part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

FHA is not a direct lender, but provides for insuring low-interest, low-down payment, assumable mortgages.  The Mortgage Insurance Premium (MIP) or Mutual Mortgage Insurance (MMI) collected on each FHA loan, as established by HUD, helps defray the cost of the insurance program.

FHA has made buying a home easier than other types of real estate programs by allowing more borrowers to qualify for a home loan. FHA loans are not restricted to just the first-time homebuyer, but the loans are very well suited to them.

FHA loans have several restrictions: You can not have more than one FHA loan at any one time, and you have to live in the property. There are also maximum loan amounts, by the county the property is located.  FHA Financing can be used for the purchase or refinance of duplex, tri-plex and four-plex properties as long as the homeowner lives in one of the units.

Advantages of the FHA loan programs are:

  • Minimal down payment and closing costs – 3.5% of the purchase price
  • Easier credit qualifying guidelines than conventional loans
  • More lenient debt-to-income ratios and job requirements
  • Assumable in some cases

The loan programs available include:

  • Fixed rate – 30 and 15 year fully amortized.
  • Adjustable rate – 5/1 Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARM). This is one of the best ARMs available as it only has a 1% adjustment interval cap rate and a 5% lifetime cap.

If you currently have an FHA loan, there are streamline and cash-out refinances available. Easily change the rate and term of your current loan.

Veterans Administration (VA) Loans

The Veterans Administration (VA) loan guarantee program was created in 1944 to help service personnel returning home from World War II obtain no-down payment home financing at reasonable interest rates. Since that time, any veteran who has served a minimum time in active duty in a regular component of the United States Armed Forces can become eligible for VA benefits for use toward the purchase of a home. Unmarried, surviving spouses of veterans who died as a result of service injuries are also eligible for VA financing, as are the spouses of MIAs or POWs who were on active duty and listed as missing for more than 90 days.

Like FHA, VA is not a direct lender. It guarantees a certain portion of the loan amount to enable private lenders to make 100% loans with some protection against loss. A VA funding fee is paid to the Veterans Administration to help offset its costs of the loan program.

There is one main difference between FHA and VA loans. With a standard VA home loan, an eligible veteran can truly purchase a home with almost no cost. And if the seller agrees to pay closing costs, you can literally purchase a home with very little out-of-pocket expense!

The Veteran must have proof of eligibility, which is issued by the VA in the form of a Certificate of Eligibility. There is no mortgage insurance to be paid like in other low down payment programs and no prepayment penalties for early pay-off.

The VA loan financing is available with a fixed rate, 30-year loan.

Once funded, most FHA and VA loans are “pooled” into Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA or Ginnie Mae) mortgage-backed securities and then sold into the secondary mortgage market with guarantees by GNMA which represent the full faith and credit of the Federal Government. Ginnie Mae is a division of HUD.

Let The Mortgage House tailor the right financing for your loan. You’ll enjoy our commitment to fast, friendly and efficient service paired with the latest technology to offer the most flexible, affordable pricing possible. Talk to your local loan officer to get prequalified today!