If you're looking for a Florida FHA loan, our rates can't be beat. That said, as Florida's top-rated mortgage broker, we regularly field a number of great questions from first-time home buyers about everything from county borrowing limits to how student loans could impact your eligibility.
Below you'll find our straightforward answers to these seemingly not-so-straightforward Florida FHA loan questions.
Basic Florida FHA Loan Questions
What is the maximum Florida FHA loan amount in 2018?
Maximum loan amount vary by county for traditional forward FHA loans. The current base FHA loan limit in most of Florida counties for a one-family home is set at $294,515.00.
What is the down payment for FHA loan?
The borrower’s minimum required investment is 3.5% of the purchase price/ adjusted value of the property. The source must be from borrower’s own funds or from an acceptable gift/donor.
What is the minimum credit score required for a Florida FHA loan and first-time home buyers?
A tri-merged credit report is required with a middle credit score of at least 620. Depending on overall credit, sometimes borrowers may qualify with middle scores as low as 580. In some instances, where a co-borrower does not have any credit scores, FHA will consider approval so long as the primary borrower meets the minimum credit score requirements and has more than 50% of the qualifying income with a minimum of 3 tradelines active for last 24 months. Regardless of credit scores, FHA still evaluates overall credit history to determine if borrower gets approved eligible findings that meet FHA approval guidelines.
What is the maximum seller contributions/concessions for Florida FHA loans?
Seller and other third party contributions are limited to 6% of the sales price.
Credit & Debt Questions
What is the FHA waiting period for borrowers with previous bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy does not automatically disqualify a borrower from obtaining an FHA loan. Minimum 2 years since discharge of chapter 7 bankruptcy. Borrower with less than 2 years’ discharge may qualify for financing so long as they meet the extenuating circumstances as defined by FHA/HUD. Same rule applies for borrower with chapter 13 bankruptcy. However, borrower with chapter 13 bankruptcy may still qualify if the bankruptcy has been discharged less than 2 years if the lender is willing to do a manual underwrite with satisfactory payment history under the chapter 13 plan.
How does FHA treat charge-offs for credit card and installment loan?
Charge-off accounts are not included in borrowers’ debt.
How does FHA treat collection accounts for credit card and installment loan?
Non-medical collection accounts when the cumulative outstanding balance is greater than $2,000 borrower may either pay-off the balance or for the purpose of DTI (Debt-to-Income), provide proof payment plan or lender must use 5% of the outstanding balance and include it in the borrower’s DTI calculation.
What about borrowers applying for FHA loans that are currently in consumer credit counseling?
If the file receives automated Approve/Eligible findings then no documentation is required from the borrower.
Can I still qualify for an FHA loans if I have delinquent child support?
Delinquent child support must be paid current or in a payment plan.
What are the FHA guidelines for delinquent federal tax debt?
Borrowers with delinquent tax debt are ineligible unless currently in payment plan.
What are the FHA guidelines for borrower with previous foreclosure and deed-in-lieu?
Foreclosure waiting period is measured from the date of title transfer. 3 years must have elapsed from the time title transferred. If the foreclosed loan was an FHA loan, the 3-year waiting period is based on the date the FHA claim was paid (e.g. foreclosure 11/12/12, FHA claim dates was 7/12/13, the 3-year waiting period ends 7/13/16). Borrowers with foreclosure/DIL within 3 years of case number assignment that was due to documented extenuating circumstances may be eligible if the borrower has re-established good credit since the foreclosure. A downgrade to manual underwriting is required. If the foreclosure was included in the bankruptcy, the foreclosure waiting period still applies. HUD treats the foreclosure and BK independently, not as a single event.
What are the FHA guidelines for borrowers with previous short sale and/or pre-foreclosure?
The 3-year waiting period from date of title transfer still applies unless they were current at the time on short sale.
Can you get an FHA loan if you have a tax lien?
Borrowers with delinquent tax debt are ineligible unless currently in repayment plan. Repayment Plan Tax liens are not required to be paid in full if documentation is provided indicating the borrower is in a valid payment plan.
The following is required:
- The borrower must have made a minimum of 3 months of scheduled payments and documentation of the payments is required.
- The payment must be included in the DTI calculation.
- The borrower cannot prepay the payments to meet the 3-month payment requirement NOTE: Borrowers with delinquent taxes may or may not have a tax lien. Borrowers currently in a repayment plan, and the IRS has not filed a tax lien, are not required to meet the minimum 3-month payment requirement. The payment to the IRS will be included in the DTI calculation.
What are the FHA guidelines for income and debt ratios (also called DTI or Debt-to-Income ratio)?
Maximum debt to income ratio varies based on overall credit history and assets. Typically, the DTI cannot exceed 45% of the borrower’s gross income. However, in some cases borrowers with as high as 54.9% DTI may be eligible and in other cases borrowers may be capped at 43% DTI.
What are FHA guidelines for Employment history and loan income requirements?
A 2-year employment and income history is required for both employees and self-employed borrowers by way of pay stubs, tax returns and w2s/1099s. Borrowers with court ordered alimony and child support must document receipt of the income for a minimum of 3 months and proof that it will continue for at least 3 years.
How does FHA treat deferred Student loans?
Florida FHA loan borrowers with student loans that are in deferment or not fully amortized will be required to calculate 1% of the outstanding balance as minimum monthly payment to be included in their debt to income ratio (DTI) calculation.
Florida FHA Property Questions
What are Florida FHA Loan Eligible property types?
- Single family residences
- 2-4 unitsPUDs (attached/detached)
- Condominiums (FHA approved projects. Approval must be valid at time of case number assignment)
- Modular/prefabricated properties 1-unit only.
- Factory built but not built on a permanent chassis; built on-site similar to stick-built homes; permanently affixed to the foundation; must conform to local building codes. Property is legally classified as real property and assumes characteristics of stick-built such as permanent connections to water, electrical and waste disposal systems.
- Mixed use must conform to residential nature of the neighborhood, and commercial use cannot exceed 25% of the gross living area.
What are FHA ineligible properties in Florida?
- Non FHA approved condominium projects and/or cooperative projects
- Manufactured/mobile homes. Manufactured housing is defined as any dwelling built on a permanent chassis. Manufactured homes are ineligible even if the towing hitch, wheels and axles have been removed.
- Condo Hotels (projects managed or operated as hotel/motel, hotel/motel conversions)
- Unique properties
- Farms, orchards, ranches
- Rural property >10 acres.
- Commercial property
- Properties located in lava zones 1 and 2
Can you get a Florida FHA loan for a property acquired at auction?
If the subject property is purchased at auction, the buyer’s premium may be included in the calculation of the final sales price, as long as the amount of the buyer’s premium is reasonable and customary for the area