It goes without saying that financing is the most important element of purchasing a home. Most people come into the marketplace as buyers when they realize the rent they are paying is equivalent to a mortgage payment in this low-interest rate environment. What is typically missing is the cash for the down payment.
Some purchasers are fortunate to have family members help them. Some save for years or realize a windfall to help them with the 10 or 20 percent required. In the last few years, those without those resources and those who are current homeowners needing to move up, have realized little appreciation in their homes. Federal programs have supported low down payments, which would allow you to buy a home with a loan up to $729,000 with only 3.5 percent down.
This FHA program was ideal for new buyers with high incomes but limited cash. In the New Year, new restrictions on mortgage lending will shrink the number of properties eligible for the small down payment and therefore impact home buying within the beltway.
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