A fixed rate mortgage is a home loan with a fixed interest rate that does not change for the entire term of the loan. Once the interest rate is locked in, that interest rate does not fluctuate with market conditions. Borrowers, who want predictability or who want to hold the property for a longer term, tend to prefer fixed-rate mortgages. Most fixed-rate mortgages are amortized loans, meaning that each loan payment amount consists of a principal and interest portion of the loan.
In contrast to fixed-rate home loans, an adjustable rate mortgage has an interest rate that will change during the course of the loan. A variable rate mortgage employs a floating rate over part or all of the loan’s term, rather than having a fixed interest rate throughout. The variable rate will most often utilize an index rate, such as the Prime Rate or the Fed funds rate, and then add a loan margin on top of it. The most common instance is an adjustable rate mortgage, or ARM, which will typically have an initial fixed-rate period of some years, followed by regular adjustable rates for the rest of the loan.
An FHA (Federal Housing Administration) loan is a loan insured against default by the FHA. In other words, the FHA guarantees that a lender won’t have to write off a loan if the borrower defaults – the FHA will pay.
FHA loans are not for everybody. Nevertheless, they are a great help to some borrowers.
FHA loans allow people to buy a home with a down payment as little as 3.5% of the purchase price. Other loans might not allow such a low down payment.
Who can get an FHA Loan?
Almost anybody can get an FHA loan. There are no income limits. However, there are limits on how much you can borrow. In general, you're limited to median home prices in your area. To find the limits in your region, visit HUD's Website. To qualify for an FHA loan, you'll need to have reasonable debt to income ratios. You don't need perfect credit but you will need to have a credit score of at least 620.
3.5% down payment required on purchase
Easier to use gifts for down payment and closing costs
No prepayment penalty
Financing for home improvement using FHA 203k programs
A VA loan is perhaps the most powerful and flexible lending option on the market today. Rather than issue loans, the VA instead pledges to repay about a quarter of every loan it guarantees in the unlikely event the borrower defaults. That guarantee gives VA-approved lenders greater protection when lending to military borrowers and often leads to highly competitive rates and terms for qualified veterans.
Far and away, the most significant benefit of a VA loan is the borrower's ability to purchase with no money down. Apart from the government's USDA's Rural Development home loan and Fannie Mae's Home Path, it's all but impossible to find a lending option today that provides borrowers with 100 percent financing. VA loans have less stringent underwriting standards and requirements than conventional loans. In fact, about 80% of VA borrowers could not have qualified for a conventional loan. These loans also do not require Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which is an additional monthly expense that is required on loans where the down payment is less than 20%.
Competitive interest rates that are routinely lower than conventional rates
No prepayment penalties
Higher allowable debt-to-income ratios than for many other loans
Streamlined refinancing loans that require no additional underwriting
A Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM), the most common type of a reverse mortgage, is a special type of home loan only for homeowners who are 62 years old and older. A reverse mortgage loan, like a traditional mortgage, allows homeowners to borrower money using their home as security for the loan. Also like a traditional mortgage, when you take out a reverse mortgage loan, the title to your home remains in your name. However, unlike a traditional mortgage, with a reverse mortgage loan, borrowers don’t make monthly mortgage payments. The loan is repaid when the borrower no longer lives in the home. Interest and fees are added to the loan balance each month and the balance grows. With a reverse mortgage loan, homeowners are required to pay property taxes and homeowners insurance, use the property as their principal residence, and keep their house in good condition. With a reverse mortgage loan, the amount the homeowner owes to the lender goes up – not down, over time. This is because interest and fees are added to the loan balance each month. As your loan balance increases, your home equity decreases. A reverse mortgage loan is not free money. It is a loan where borrowed money + interest + fees each month = rising loan balance. The homeowners or their heirs will eventually have to pay back the loan, usually by selling the home.