Basic Facts About The HomeReady Mortgage®, A Government-Backed Low Down Payment Loan

June 13, 2019 by Dan Green

In 2015, the government’s five mortgage agencies entered into an informal competition for home buyers seeking low-down-payment loans to buy a house.

The battle sparked the birth of several new low-down payment loans, one of which is the HomeReady Mortgage®, authorized from Fannie Mae.

HomeReady® remains popular today, but probably not as popular as Fannie Mae had hoped.

The agency gave HomeReady® a branded name with its own trademark in hopes that buyers would ask for it by its name. That hasn’t happened, though. Buyers barely know the loan exists at all.

And, why should they!

Mortgage lenders are the ones who are supposed to match a buyer with the most suitable loan for their needs. Buyers shouldn’t shoulder that responsibility.

But, when buyers get a HomeReady mortgage, they learn that the loan’s not just limited to first-time home buyers, and that it requires a down payment of just three percent. 

When you buy a house for $250,000, therefore, your down payment with HomeReady is $7,500 and those monies can come from cash in your savings, or from a gift from a family member.

They also learn the real strength of the HomeReady Mortgage® — that it’s financially-subsidized by the U.S. government which means lower interest rates all around.

HomeReady isn’t available to everyone, though. Your lender makes sure at least one of the following conditions can be met:

  • Your household income is lower than the area’s median income
  • The median income in the home’s census tract is below the area’s median income
  • The minority density in the home’s census tract is 30% or higher

When you’re eligible for HomeReady and you qualify for it, you get access to lower interest rates as compared to buyers in non-subsidized loans — in some instances, by a half-percentage point or more.

HomeReady is particular good for multi-generational households where parents and adult children live together and contribute to the household income; and, when boarder income is collected from friends or family.

HomeReady also allows for co-signers.

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