Last Updated on February 27, 2023 by Luke Feldbrugge
At Homes for Heroes, we want to see every nurse and hero buy or sell their home. For some, it can be hard to come up with the down payment or favorable loan terms to make homeownership a reality. We break down some of the more common home buying programs for nurses to show that owning a home is more realistic than you think!
Zero and Low Money Down Payment Loans
FHA Loans for Nurses
There are several programs for home buying and down payment assistance for nurses. There are different loans, national programs, grants, tax credits, and even discounts and deals from real estate agents and lenders. Sometimes it can be hard to even know where to begin!
A great place to start is to familiarize yourself with the different home mortgage loan options available to nurses. There are multiple types of loans that require little to no money in a down payment, which can be great for first time home buyers or someone who doesn’t have a lot of cash on hand to make a large down payment.
FHA loans, for example, require as low as 3.5% for a down payment with good credit scores. Even if you have a lower credit score, FHA loans only require up to 10% for a down payment. So, a down payment at 3.5% on a $200,000 home could be as low as $7,000. Sometimes, you can even roll closing costs into your loan, meaning you’ll need to have even less cash at your closing.
Benefits of FHA Home Loans for Nurses:
- Nurses with a credit score of 580 or higher can qualify for a FHA loan. Scores as low as 500 can be accepted, depending on the lender.
- Home buyers can put down as little as 3.5% for a down payment. If nurses have a credit score of 500-579, you may still qualify for an FHA home loan, but may need to put down closer to 10% for a down payment.
- Closing costs can sometimes be rolled into the mortgage payment, meaning you’ll pay less at closing in a large sum.
USDA Home Loans for Nurses
USDA home loans do not require a down payment, so you can instantly save on a home purchase using this type of loan. These home loans are designed for people living in or moving to rural areas. The USDA recognizes towns and cities up to 35,000 people as rural, meaning you don’t necessarily need to live on a farm in the country. There are more requirements to meet for this type of government-backed loan, but there are many benefits if you qualify. One of the main qualifications for a USDA loan are the income guidelines, set by the USDA.
First, there is no down payment requirement because the loan amount you can request can be 100% of the home purchase price. Second, there is technically no minimum credit requirement, although a credit score of 640 or better is more favorable. Lastly, you can use a USDA loan to build a new home in a rural area, you do not need to use it on an existing home.
Benefits of USDA Home Loans for Nurses:
- There is a possibility for no down payment.
- Loan terms offer competitive interest rates.
- Since there is no technical minimum credit score to qualify, credit guidelines are flexible. But, most lenders prefer a credit score of 640 or higher. This will vary by lender.
- Loan terms are available in common fixed-rate terms like 30-year and 15-year loans.
- The income guidelines are based on the income of all adults who will be living in the home.
Down Payment Assistance Programs
Another great home buying program for nurses is to take a first time home buyer class. These classes cover things like understanding your finances, budgets, the process of buying and closing on a house, and steps along the way like getting a home inspection and buying homeowners insurance. Many first time home buyer classes also talk about great down payment programs specific to your location through these classes.
Some times certain lenders strongly encourage that you attend these classes, but the are not necessarily required. You can find classes at the city, county, and state level, depending on where you’re looking to buy your home. There are also several programs funded at the state level by the federal government. The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, or HUD, have funds they distribute to states to use on their various programs.
Also, a great program to look into for down payment assistance if you’re a nurse is through Down Payment Resource. This is a comprehensive, online database of down payment assistance programs. You can enter your information, including that you’re a nurse, to see the programs and financial assistance available to you. Down Payment Resource has approximately 2,300 programs in their database, and they automatically match you with.
Homes for Heroes Nurses Program
If you qualify for down payment assistance and are able to get an FHA or USDA loan, there are even more savings out there for nurses! Homes for Heroes program has helped over 43,000 healthcare workers and other heroes save over $75 million on their home transactions. We do this by giving Hero Rewards back to you after your home closing.
When you use one of our affiliate real estate agents to buy and/or sell your home, you’ll get 0.7% of the purchase price back as a check. So, if you buy a home for $200,000, you’d get $1,400 back. Plus, if you work with our mortgage, title and inspection specialists, you can save $500 on lender fees, $150 on title services, and $50 on a home inspection. On average, our heroes save $3,000!
We also have partnerships with local and national companies to provide deals for nurses on moving and items for your new home. Discounts on home security systems, moving companies, home improvement, and even deals on clothing can be found on our deals page.
Sign up now to talk to a Homes for Heroes agent. There is no obligation, cost, or extra paperwork for you. You can also get Hero Rewards regardless of the down payment assistance or type of loan you use.