Nita Ramsey, Home Buyer in La Mesa, CA

Do I really have to have 20% as a down payment? I will be a first time homebuyer and I'm interested in buying a condo.

Asked by Nita Ramsey, La Mesa, CA Tue Aug 16, 2011

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18
Shane Milne’s answer
Conventional financing: 3% down (this is available for properties which are not listed at http://www.homepath.com/ too - "non HomePath homes" you could call them)
VA financing: 0% down and condo has to be listed as approved at https://vip.vba.va.gov/portal/VBAH/VBAHome/condopudsearch (there is a process to getting a condo approved, takes 1-3 months depending on how competent the condo association is)
FHA financing: 3.5% down and condo has to be listed as approved at https://entp.hud.gov/idapp/html/condlook.cfm (there is a process to getting a condo approved, typically takes ~3 weeks)

Shane Milne | Loan Officer in Orange County, CA | NMLS #81195
Direct local #'s: 949-273-4161 or 646-257-4842
Lending in all 50 states, all types of mortgages
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 19, 2011
Hi Nita:

No, you do not need 20% to make a purchase. You also have the option of putting down 3.5% if you choose to use FHA financing.

Please email me (sandiegohouse@gmail.com) or call me (619.857.5044) should you have any other questions.

All the Best,

Sasha Harvey
_______________________________
Sasha A. Harvey | REALTOR®
San Diego Castles Realty
CELL: 619.857.5044
FAX: 619.342.9857
sandiegohouse@gmail.com
http://www.sandiegolocalrealestate.com
DRE Lic. # 01355590

*** top 10 nominee for Union Tribune's "San Diego's BEST Real Estate Agent". winner to be announced on September 1st, 2011!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Hi Nita,

No, you don't need 20% down. There are loan programs as low as 3%- 3.5% down. However, with lower downpayments you will have to pay what's called private mortgage insurance (PMI). If you need a referral to some excellent mortgage lenders, please feel free to give me a call or email me.

Rosemary Joles
Pacific Sotheby's International Realty
619-405-7673
Homes@InHarmonyWithYourDreams.com
Web Reference: http://livininlamesa.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
No way! You have a few choices:

VA-owned homes - - If you qualify, you can get a loan with 0% down without being in the Military.
HomePath homes - - 3% down homes on FannieMae owned properties
FHA - - 3.5% down on any qualifying home (must be habitable, free of hazards, very common now)

Let me know if I can help at all, I've mainly worked with first-time buyers and investors in this market.

Warm Regards,
Cory
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
it depends on the complex you are trying to buy, some condo complex can qualify with a down of as little as 3.5%
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
it depends on the complex you are trying to buy, some condo complex can qualify with a down of as little as 3.5%
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
Nita,
Also remember that when looking at condos you have to account for the monthly HOA fees... these can range from $50- 500 a month. This often over looked item can be a factor that pushes an "affordable" condo into the unreasonable range. Sometimes it is better to weigh your options and also consider looking at single family homes for the same monthly payment.
707-546-0440
Glenn@GrovesTeam.net
Web Reference: http://GrovesTeam.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
Nita, As you can see, there are quite a few options for purchasing a condo without 20% down payment. To use VA/FHA, as mentioned, the condo project must be approved by HUD (this includes owner occupancy ratios, reserves and delinquencies of the Homeowner's association and other pertinent documentation). It is easy for a lender to guide you towards condo projects that are HUD approved. I am working with some large condo projects downtown and, in doing my research, was surprised to see a number of projects that are quickly approaching expiration of their HUD approval. It will be important that you have guidance on when (if) the project expires, as well as if they are HUD approved. You certainly do not want to enter into a contract with a looming expiration of the condo project.

Save yourself some frustration and have a mortgage professional give you a list of viable projects within your price range and your preferred area if you desire to use FHA/VA financing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
Many San Diego first time buyers ease themselves into the market by purchasing a condominium. Most of these first time buyers are armed with an FHA or VA loan (federally insured loans). These loans come with a low minimum downpayment of 0- 3.5%. According to lender guidelines in order to purchase a condominium with a federally insured loan, the complex must be HUD approved.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

Maria Petrecs | REALTOR®
Realty Experts
CELL: 760-484-4561
DRE Lic. # 01386327
mariapetrecs@sbcglobal.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 17, 2011
There are conventional loans with 5% down for condos as well as FHA with 3.5% down. There are conventional loans with less than 20% down available without PMI as well if your credit score is high and you have low debt. Feel free to contact me for specific details on qualification.
Web Reference: http://WeFixRates.Com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Nita,

No one seems to have mentioned the VA option (if You are eligible), which requires 0% down. Other than that, the FHA is a good way to go with only 3.5%. In both cases, credit score requirements are in the low 600 range, so qualification is easy from that perspective.

Mr Credit
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Hi Nita,
20% is not required to buy a home. In fact there are several different loan programs below the 20%.
please feel free to give me a call if you'd like any help.
Thanks,

Daniel Di Matteo
CENTURY 21
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Nita,

Very simply, No.

Daniel
760-230-5225
Web Reference: http://www.lehmangrp.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
ps Nita you may not be able to go with an FHA loan if the condo compex is not approved for FHA.

Check out http://www.fha.gov .........for a list of approved condos in your area.

As I mentioned - if you speak with a loan officer, they will let you know which condos are FHA approved.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
FHA is your best option as indicated by agents posting here.

3.5%down

But condo has to be FHA approved, and conditions apply.

Contact a good FHA lender locally, and a good agent to represent you.

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Nita - the amount you will need for a down payment will be a function of your entire financial picture - ie - how much you earn.......what your credit scores are...... and what you have in savings.

Speak to a mortage rep., and he or she will be able to give you a better idea of what will be required.

Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
No. With an FHA loan you can put as little as 3.5% down. You'll still need to qualify with regard to your credit, income, employment (cash-flow), etc. The first thing to do is pick out a lender and get prequalified. It's as simple as a 15 minute phone call to a capable lender (let me know if you need a referral). Be prepared to have a detailed, personal financial conversation though. Once you have that talk you should walk away with a pretty good idea of what priced home you can afford, what down payment you'll need and what your monthly payments are going to be. Call if you need more help.

Kevin Dougherty
ReMax
619-977-7777
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
Nita,

There are other loan programs available for first time homebuyers besides conventional loans. (FHA for instance requires 3.5%) . It would be in your best interest to consult a mortgage professional/direct lender for your options.

Kind Regards,
Marcie Sands, REALTOR
760-644-1562
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 16, 2011
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