Eanr, Home Buyer in Bloomingdale, Washin...

My partner and I are looking to buy a home in Washington DC, but my FICO score is much lower than his (590 to his 780). Could we qualify for a home?

Asked by Eanr, Bloomingdale, Washington, DC Fri Apr 5, 2013

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Kelly Putz, Agent, Fairfax, VA
Thu Apr 11, 2013
Hi Eanr,

As a couple, together you certainly could qualify for a home, though the qualifications would rest more upon your partner's score and income. I would talk to a lender before doing anything and he/she could tell you best about what you could qualify for. My recommendation also is to talk to more than one lender and not to a big bank, but to a smaller local lender. They will be friendlier with your low score towards a loan package and more likely to assist you in getting your score up so you can qualify for a better loan.

As for your score, while I am not a financial adviser, I have helped numerous clients (and my husband before we bought our first house) with the following tips:
- if you don't have a credit card in your name get one or two, even if they are secured
- use the card every month, even if it is just to buy gas for your car
- DON'T pay the balance OFF, but pay it down each month. They want to see you use it and carrying a small balance.
- in paying the balance down, pay more than the minimum by at least $5. It's sounds silly, I know, but this will boost your score 5-20 points per month, depending on the card.
- If you already have a card, get your balance below 50% of the total limit. This will boost your score 20-30 points. If you can get it below 30%, you get a bigger boost.
- by paying only slightly more than the minimum each month, your balance will start to rise, so every now and then, pay more than what you charged in that month or, if you can afford it, a couple hundred dollars. A combination of this and the last two can potentially boost you 50 points in one month. I've seen it happen!
- Do not miss payments or pay late on anything, including utility or cell phone bills. They get reported also!

Over a period of 6-12 months you could have your score up to 700 or better if you are consistent.

Hope this helps!
1 vote
Jamar Camper, Renter, Alexandria, VA
Sun Dec 15, 2013

Please contact me for your financing as I could get you great rates and funding in attractive timing.
JC 2024213092
0 votes
Lanre Folayan, Agent, Washington, DC
Sun Dec 15, 2013
How are you doing? Happy Sunday to you. I know this has been over seven months now since you posted this question. I just wanted to know if you and your partner buy a home in Washington DC?

If so please share your experience with us. It would help many home buyers who are either about to start the home buying process or currently looking for a home to buy know what to expect. And hopefully it will help a Real Estate Professional like me to help deal with home buyers and sellers better. Thank you very much. Take care.
0 votes
Your Solar R…, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Sat Apr 13, 2013
Review and update your credit and consult a credit specialist.
0 votes
Endre Barath, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Sat Apr 13, 2013
Eanr the best thing to do is talk with a Mortgage Broker. My take is you might pay a little higher interest rate in the begininning but keep in mind Mortgage Rates are at a 60 year low so instead you might have intrest rates of 30 year low. Still good!

Endre Barath,Jr.
Prudential California Realty
Beverly Hills, CA

Web Reference:  http://www.endrebarath.com
0 votes
Hillary Nash, Agent, Washington, DC
Thu Apr 11, 2013
There are definitely a couple of programs that the two of you could look into to purchase. If you like, we do a Buyer counseling session where we assess how ready clients are to purchase. One aspect of that session is to review all of your financial documents to see what type of lender would be a good match. With a low FICO, some lenders can still get clients in through FHA. The will be other items that will play a factor, like Income, Reserves, Debt to Income Ratio, etc. Once we figure that out, you can either be pre-approved, or we can recommend some credit repair and re-scoring so that you can be approved in a 30-60 day window.

I hope this information helps, and don't hesitate to give me a call for more information.


Hillary Nash McAuley
Exit Elite Realty
301.277.3948 o
202.907.7301 c
0 votes
Maureen Dwyer, Agent, Ashburn, VA
Sat Apr 6, 2013
I would talk to a lender, or several, to see what you can do to get your credit score improved as you must certainly be wanting to do. It won't happen overnight and the rule of thumb is to take the lower - whether it's income or credit - when evaluating for a loan. If your partner's income will allow, it might be better to go forward with only him on the loan, you both can be on the title. But definitely talk to a lender for guidance on how to proceed.
0 votes
Boris Miric, Agent, Alexandria, VA
Fri Apr 5, 2013

There are numerous programs for buyers with challenging credit.
If interested please connect with me I will go over few programs with you including the $500 down product.

BORIS MIRIC - Realtor Serving DC–VA–MD
Certified Investor Agent Specialist (CIAS)
Certified Distressed Properties Expert (CDPE)
Office: (202) 459-4700 | Fax: (202) 318-6520
Web Reference:  http://www.borismiric.com
0 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Fri Apr 5, 2013
Your score will hurt, not help the situation.

He could qualify on his own if his income is high enough.

Speak with a loan officer for specific advice on how to get your score up, and how much he can afford without you being on the loan.

Best wishes...........
0 votes
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