USDA / Rural Housing Mortgage – Class in session…

Summarizing The USDA / Rural Housing Mortgage Program

The USDA loan guidelines are straight-forward. You must qualify for the program and your home must, too.

Here are some common USDA mortgage questions.

How do I check if my home is USDA / Rural Housing-eligible?

With the USDA Rural Housing Program, your home must be located in a rural area. However, the USDA's definition of "rural" is quite liberal. Many small towns meet the USDA requirements, as do suburbs and exurbs of most major U.S. cities. Click here to check your home's USDA loan eligibility.

What is the USDA program's minimum down payment ?

The USDA has no down payment requirement. You can finance 100% with a USDA loan.

Is the USDA loan program limited to first-time buyers?

No, the USDA Rural Housing Program can be used by first-time buyers and repeat buyers.

Can I finance the Upfront Mortgage Insurance into my mortgage, which is 2% of the purchase price?

Yes, the USDA will let you finance your Upfront Mortgage Insurance payment into your loan size. For example, if you bought a home for $100,000 and borrowed the full $100,000 from your lender, your Upfront Mortgage Insurance would be $2,000. You could then raise your loan size to $102,000.

What mortgage products are available with a USDA mortgage?

The USDA / Rural Housing Program offers 30-year fixed rate mortgages only. There is no 15-year fixed rate mortgage. There are no adjustable-rate mortgages. 30-year fixed only.

How much are the closing costs for a USDA mortgage?

Closing costs vary by lender and location. For example, some lenders have high origination charges. ( however we do not). The same is true for state and local governments. Some states have high costs, others have low costs.

I can't afford closing costs. Can I get a gift for my closing costs?

Yes, USDA loans allow gifts from family members and non-family members. You will need a gift letter to accompany your loan application. Your loan officer can give you one, that’s me…. Marsha Stone- American Security Mortgage – NMLS # 90796.

I negotiated to have the seller pay my closing costs. Is that allowed?

Yes, the USDA Rural Housing Program allows sellers to pay closing costs for buyers. These costs can include state and local government fees, lender costs, title charges, and any number of home and pest inspections.

Can I use the USDA loan program for a vacation home?

No, the USDA Rural Housing Program is for primary residences only.

Can I use the USDA loan program for an investment property?

No, the USDA Rural Housing Program is for primary residences only.

Is there a minimum credit score for the USDA loan program?

There is no minimum score, but 640 is generally regarded as a cutoff point for most investors.

I recently went back to work. How long until I am USDA-eligible?

If you are a W-2 employee, you are eligible for USDA financing immediately; you don't need a job history. If you have less than 2 years in a job, however, you may not be able to use your bonus income for qualification purposes.

I am self-employed. Can I use the USDA loan program?

Yes, self-employed persons can use the USDA Rural Housing Program. If you are self-employed and want to use USDA financing, as with FHA and conventional financing, you will be asked to provide 2 years of federal tax returns to verify your self-employment income.

Can I do a "cash out" refinance with the USDA program?

No, the USDA Rural Housing Program is for purchases and rate-and-term refinances only.

Can I use the USDA loan program for my working farm?

No, the USDA Rural Housing Program is for residential property.

Are USDA mortgage rates good?

Yes, USDA Rural Housing Program mortgage rates are often as low as comparable conventional 30-year fixed mortgage rates.

This list is not meant to be a comprehensive of what the USDA allows, but it covers a lot of good ground.

Income limits for this area.

Wilmington, NC HUD Metro FMR Area

1-4 persons $74750.00

5-9 person $98650.00



Marsha R. Stone

Branch Manager/Sr. Mortgage Banker


NMLS ID 90796

American Security Mortgage

1015 Ashes Drive, Suite 100

Wilmington, NC 28405

910-232-3221 (cell)

888-657-1116 (efax)

910-239-5310 ( direct line)