Home Buying in Austin>Question Details

Rebecca Marie, Renter in Austin, TX

what does your credit score have to be to buy a house?

Asked by Rebecca Marie, Austin, TX Tue Sep 17, 2013

Help the community by answering this question:


This is a hard question to answer because minimum credit scores can vary from lender to lender. I can personally give out loans with credit scores as low as 580. Although this is my minimum credit score, not every lender may be able to offer this. I recommend you shop around and speak to lenders like myself. I would be more than willing to speak with you to help you get the loan that you need. Well I hope this helps! If you have any further questions or if you need a loan, feel free to contact me. Also, if you found this helpful please leave me a recommendation if you can! Good Luck! Brian Nguyen Sr. Mortgage Banker NMLS # 659743 Phone: 949.667.2887 brian.nguyen@nafinc.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 19, 2014
I would talk to a lender. They can also help you figure out how to raise your credit if it is not satisfactory.

Josh Daniels, Realtor®
2025 N HWY 35
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 16, 2013
Typically 580 but lenders look at a lot of factors beside credit score such as your income, length of employment, how long have you been in the same job, your asset etc etc. I would suggest talking to a lender to get an idea of where you are.

Let me know if you need a name or two mortgage advisors. You can call me at 469-371-2899. I also know of a good realtor in Austin.

Susie Kay, Realtor®
United Real Estate
III Lincoln Centre, 5430 LBJ Freeway #280
Dallas, TX 78240


Servicing your real estate need is my priority!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 19, 2013
Rebecca, I know you have gotten many, many answers but it is based on your credit, debt, income, job history, etc.... Not just your credit score, Although that is a big factor. If you would like to get pre-approved at no cost, message me and I will connect you with an excellent lender. I only use two and both pre-approve my clients at no cost to you! Joe

Joe Jarusinsky, Realtor/Master Instructor, Keller Williams Realty, Austin's #1 Real Estate Company, Call 512-261-4415
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
FHA has no overlays when it comes to credit scores but lenders do. So while FHA may not care what your credit is like not including some factors the lender will. To obtain the best financing options you should shoot to have a credit score as high as possible. Once you can get into the 640 and up range you are in the drivers seat in most cases.

I broker with some niche lenders who can deal with credit scores as low 580. While the terms are not as good if your credit is higher the terms are not that bad.

Honestly these days FHA is less appealing if your credit is good. Conventional financing will allow you to get a loan without mortgage insurance if you can put 5% down and obtain financing with a second lien company. Also if you go the one lien route with conventional financing a huge benefit of going conventional is that you can eliminate your mortgage insurance in as little as 2 years in some cases. With FHA the mortgage insurance is a lot higher and you really are stuck with it forever... so a rate you are quoted for an FHA loan is essentially over a point higher in some cases when you take into account the monthly mortgage insurance you will be paying for the life of the loan these days.

If you would like to discuss these options so you can make an educated decision as to what is the best way for you to go with financing options or rebuilding your credit so you can buy in the future please feel free to call or email me.

Hope this helps.

Don Groff | REALTOR® & Mortgage Broker
Austin Real Estate Pros & 360 Lending Group
o 512.669.5599 | m 512.633.4157 | listings@dongroff.com
websites: http://www.AustinListed.com | http://www.360LendingGroup.com
Web Reference: http://www.AustinListed.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
For FHA lowest fico 560, However if you need MCC(680) or some bonds they have separate requirements ! speak to your lender about all your options as they have your unique financial picture and can best guide you in this area.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
Credit scores are not the only criteria used to underwrite a mortgage application. They are the most talked about because they are the easiest to understand. But they are only a tiny part of the big picture and that is how applications are underwritten, the entire enchilada, not just the beans. The reason I point this out is because the process can be very expensive once the ball gets rolling. Do your research first on the entire picture not just one item.

Have your Realtor introduce you to the loan officer they trust the most. Gather all of the support documents that will be needed to apply for a loan and meet with the LO face-to-face, have them walk you through the process and options available, good luck, home this helps,

Jim Simms
NMLS # 6395
Financing Kentucky One Home at a Time
I answer questions about financing real estate based on my decades of experience dealing with mortgage underwriters. I do not offer legal or tax advice, if you need answers from an attorney or CPA find one knowledgeable in your local market.
Web Reference: http://jamessimms.com/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
You can have any credit score above 600 (usually) to buy a house.

Here's how it works:

Your credit score determines your interest rates.

To get the best interest rates, which are around 4.5% right now , you need a great credit score. Something in the high 700's or better.

As your credit score goes down, the interest rate for a house goes up. This is because your credit score is used to determine how risky it is for a bank to lend you money. The lower the score, the more risk, and the higher the interest rate.

Of course if you have a credit score of 400, and $500,000 cash in the bank, you can buy a house anyway.

Every bank or lender has their own criteria - and they also look at your whole financial picture to give you a loan.

If you have more questions, I'll gladly answer them for you, just send me a note.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
You're asking the right questions! But, the best person to help you out, is a banker or lender you can trust, as there are more factors, than just credit score. One of my preferred lenders is Scott Dill: 512.689.5342. Give him a call, and see what he has to say.

Best of luck out there!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
The higher the better, of course. But depending on the lender and other factors, as in your debt to income ratio, the credit score can be as low as 600. You can sometimes combat a low credit score, by applying for a higher rate of interest. A large down payment can also help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
There are deals at 580..... but they are hard to get.

600+ is easier.

Tom Burris
Mortgage Banker
(214) 763-4629 cell/text/nights/weekends(Really!!)
Lending all across the entire Great State of Texas!!
NMLS# 335055
Search Dallas area MLS for FREE. No registration => http://www.ntreisinnovia.net/cgi-ntr/BR_login?0501134
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
You're generally OK if you're above 640. There are some programs that let you go down to 580.

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
Credit score is one of the important questions you'll need to know. I encourage you to engage the help of a professional that you select. Someone who can guide you from where you are today through the successful closing on your home.
Credit Score: Middle credit score from 580 (in some cases) & up. Probably need 640
Debt/income ratio: 45% or less
Down Payment: In some cases Zero most likely at least 3.5% of purchase price.
Other & Closing Costs: About 4.5% of the purchase price.
A local Realtor can assist you throughout the process. As a buyer their professional help costs you nothing. I would be happy to help you if you choose. I will send my buyers guide if you want it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
Hi Rebecca, as a local Austin Realtor I get this question often. The best answer is that you need to get with a local lender and have them review your credit and income which will then tell you what you qualify for. There's no magic number but there are ranges that determine what programs fit you best.
Feel free to call or email me and I'm happy to provide contact info for some wonderful local mortgage folks who are happy to help! It's a great time to buy a home in Central Texas - Best Regards, Laura 512-771-5334 laura@premiereteam.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
There are multiple ways a lender can aid a client with less than perfect credit. The number I have heard is 640 and higher helps the borrower get the best rates.

Bruce Keith
Premiere Team
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
Rachel I have a lender who is one of only three in Texas that offers loans at a 580 credit score minimum, and free credit repair. I can give you more details please contact me as soon as possible. Thanks, Ceci Burklow 512-673-3414
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
Hi Rebecca,

The minimum credit score is going to depend on a number of factors besides the individual lender. It will depend on your income, debts, down payment, and the type of property you want to buy.

Generally you will need a credit score of 620 or higher to qualify for a conventional mortgage. For FHA, they are a little more forgiving as far as credit, although most lenders are going to require at least 620-640 credit. My company can do FHA mortgages with as low as a 600 credit score.

But you have to realize, just as important as the credit score itself is the information that is contributing to the score. In other words, just because you meet the minimum credit score requirement doesnt mean you will get the loan for sure. Lenders look at your overall credit profile as a predictor of whether you will make mortgage payments on time as agreed. If you've shown a disregard for credit obligations in the past then you will need to plead a strong case for yourself and demonstrate a very good RECENT credit history to combat missteps in the past.

I'd be glad to walk you through the process to see if you qualify now, and if not, what you need to do to position yourself to own a home in the near future.

Feel free to give me a call or email me.

Tony Grech

Loan Officer -NMLS #977416

WCS Lending, LLC
Toll Free: 866.936.5363 ext. 278
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
Only a lender would be able to determine this, as each lender has their own set of standards
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 17, 2013
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