A conventional loan is the most commonly used mortgage program and the most widely available. Conventional loans are for individuals who have steady income, good credit and have funds available for a down payment. A conventional loan is not insured by the federal government (like USDA, FHA and VA loans) and is often the preferred route to home financing for many homebuyers. The underwriting process typically goes quicker than on government loans.
Conventional loans are available in fixed-rate or adjustable-rate (ARM) loans and have a term of 15, 20, or 30 years. The shorter the term, the lower the rate. Private mortgage insurance is required on top of your regular PITI payment when you have less than 20% equity in the home. If you put down less than 20%, the private mortgage insurance will automatically fall off when you reach 22% equity in the home, although you can request that it be removed earlier (at 20%).
Conventional loans follow Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines. Below are some of the general eligibility requirements of a conventional loan. Because each case is different, make sure to call us to determine if you qualify.
Credit scores – generally 620 or above
Income – Your mortgage payment cannot be more than 31% of your monthly gross income, and your total monthly debts (house, car, student loans, etc.) cannot exceed 45% of your monthly gross income.
Down payment – The typical minimum down payment for a conventional loan is 5%. You may be eligible to put 3% down if you meet the income threshold for the county in which you are purchasing.
The borrower cannot have any derogatory credit events in at least the last four years.
Conventional refinance loans follow the same Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines in regards to credit and income. Like a purchase, if you have less than 20% equity in the home, private mortgage insurance will be required as a part of your regular monthly payment.
We offer construction and renovation loans as well for borrowers building a home or remodeling an existing home. There is a two-part process: borrowers are approved for the mortgage following standard conventional guidelines, and the contractor and project are approved for the construction. These loans can take longer than a regular conventional loan due to this dual approval.
On a construction loan, the borrower makes interest-only payments during the construction period. Once construction is completed, the borrower’s qualifications are re-checked and regular, full monthly payments begin.
On a renovation loan, the borrower begins regular monthly payments right away, including during the renovation period. The costs for the renovation are wrapped into the loan amount.
What documents will I need?
Below is a general list of documents needed for a conventional loan. You may need more or fewer documents depending on your situation.
Identity verification docs (such as driver’s license)
W2s for the past 2 years
Bank statements (last 2 months)
Mortgage statements for any properties owned
For self-employed borrowers, see our self-employment page
We are here to walk you step-by-step through the process. To see if you pre-qualify for a Conventional home loan, contact Jay Dacey, NMLS #375033 today at 651-315-7681.