A side effect of the nation’s ongoing Coronavirus pandemic is the abundance of caution that has taken hold of the home lending industry. With the economy in crisis mode, many financial institutions have announced they are tightening their underwriting standards.
It is not uncommon to hear of minimum credit scores in the 700s and 20% down payment requirements that will result in many potential homebuyers being frozen out of the market. Most negatively affected will be those with lower credit scores and limited down payment resources.
At AHFA, our programs are here to help low- to moderate-income homebuyers have access to affordable housing. Our Step Up program provides competitive rates and down payment assistance to homebuyers with a minimum credit score of 640 and a qualifying – not household – income of $97,300 or less for the FHA Step Up program. For the Conventional Step Up program, qualifying income must be 80 percent or less of the Area Median Income (AMI) for property location or $97,300 (whichever is less).
The down payment assistance is secured through a 10-year 2
mortgage. For borrowers that do not need down payment assistance, Step Up can still offer a first mortgage at a competitive rate for those who have a credit score that prevents them from qualifying for many other programs.
Step Up loans are not bond loans. They do not come with complicated, cumbersome paperwork requirements. In fact, we’ve streamlined several aspects of the application process over the last two years. In addition, our Business Development team stands ready to answer all of your questions related to our Step Up program, as well as our other homeownership programs.
AHFA programs remain available to those looking to buy a home while also meeting needs the traditional secondary market currently cannot. If you'd like more information or have any questions about our programs, email