Government Loans That Make Homeownership Possible

Advocacy & Policy, Veteran Resources,


Government Loans That Make Homeownership Possible in Lee County, Florida

Submitted article by FedHome Loan Centers.

Have you ever thought about owning a home in a beautiful beach area but are not sure you can afford all the initial costs that come with buying such a property?

Thankfully, it is possible to own such property with minimal to no initial costs. This possibility is thanks to government-guaranteed home loans offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).

Both VA and FHA government loans can buy a home in beach communities like in Lee County, think Fort Myers, Bonita Springs etc, where residents can enjoy the county’s many museums, art galleries, and golf courses. Also, county residents can enjoy the county’s beautiful parks, islands, and much more. Living in such an area is possible for little to no money down.

VA Home Loan Information

Government loans guaranteed by the Veterans Affairs (VA) offer what many real estate experts refer to as the best home loans available. That description is due to its excellent benefits, which have been improving since its creation. Today VA home loans offer benefits like:

  • $0 down payment requirement for loans up to $5 million (depending on lenders guidelines).
  • No Loan pre-payment penalties.
  • Lower monthly mortgage payments.
  • Interest rates are lower than conventional loans.
  • Borrower can finance the funding fee.
  • Come in both 15 and 30-year fixed-rate mortgage options.

Buyers with more than one active VA home loan are limited to how much they can borrow, with having a loan limit based on the county where the property is. Currently, this limit in Lee County is $548,250.

Besides loan limits for dual active VA home loans, borrowers who want to apply for a VA home loan must be veterans, active service duty members, National Guard members, or eligible surviving spouses. Applicants must also meet eligibility requirements, including service, income, credit score, and property eligibility. 

Military service must have been of at least 90 days of consecutive active duty service during wartime or 181 days during peacetime. If the applicant is a National Guard member, they must have served at least six years on active duty. For the income to be deemed eligible, it must have come from a full-time job, social security, retirement or VA disability.

Other incomes are still eligible with two to three-year continuances. The VA has no set credit score limit, but most lenders prefer a minimum of 640, although other lenders go down to 580.

FHA Home Loan Information

FHA home loans are the most popular government-guaranteed home loans because they are the easiest to qualify for and enjoy. All that is needed to be eligible is that the borrower has a credit score of 580.

However, some lenders accept applicants with credit scores as low as 500 with a higher down payment. Additional eligibility requirements include having a debt to income ratio of less than 43%, and a steady income and employment.     

Once the applicant is eligible, they will submit an FHA loan application and enjoy its great benefits. These benefits include a low down payment of 3.5%, which can be covered by a family member or by taking out an FHA Down Payment Assistance Grant.

Lower monthly mortgages are also a feature, along with decreased closing costs. These loans are also available in 15 or 30-year fixed-rate mortgage options, depending on how much the borrower can pay monthly. Unlike VA loans, FHA home loans are available to most legal residents due to their lenient eligibility requirements.

As a result, these loans are prevalent among first-time homebuyers who might not have the most remarkable financial past. The only limitation that these loans have is county loan limits, which for Lee County are currently at:

Single-family

Duplex

Triplex

Fourplex

$356,362

$456,275

$551,500

$685,400

Key Takeaways

Buying a home through one of these two loans is possible as long as you meet all eligibility requirements. So make your dream of homeownership a reality and use these loans to buy your future single-family home, multi-family complex of up to four units, or a VA/FHA-approved condo.

Phil Georgiades is the CLS for FedHome Loan Centers, a government-sponsored lender specializing in first-time buyer home loans. With over 22 years of experience working in real estate, he and his team of experts can help you acquire your future home.

About SWFL Inc.

At SWFL Inc., our vision is to build a vibrant and prosperous community in Southwest Florida where businesses and people succeed. Every policy, program and challenge we take supports that vision.

Our team at SWFL Inc. is working actively with local leaders to change land development code that will permit an increase in workforce housing. To do this, we’re advocating for policy that allows for ADUs (Accessory Dwelling Units), increase in density, reduce building costs and support both public and private initiatives that offer incentives to plan and build workforce housing.

If you’re interested in learning more about SWFL Inc.’s 2022 Legislative Agenda, visit SWFLinc.com/economic-development. You can also contact Josh Goergen, SWFL Inc.’s Government Relations Manager, to learn more about workforce housing and how you can join us in our workforce housing advocacy efforts. He can be reached at (239) 992-2943 or [email protected]