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A Simple Guide to Home Possible Loans from Freddie Mac 

Our advice is based on experience in the mortgage industry and we are dedicated to helping you achieve your goal of owning a home. We may receive compensation from partner banks when you view mortgage rates listed on our website.

Home Possible® is the branded name of Freddie Mac’s 3 percent down, low down payment mortgage. It’s an affordable mortgage program for first-time home buyers, repeat buyers, and refinancing households.

Freddie Mac created Home Possible to help low- and moderate-income households achieve their American Dream of homeownership. 

The program lowers mortgage rates for eligible home buyers and subsidizes costs. Home Possible homeowners pay less to buy and own property than the typical U.S. home buyer.

Higher-income households may also qualify for Home Possible.

Who Is Eligible for the Freddie Mac Home Possible Mortgage?

No particular action is required to apply for a low down payment home Home Possible mortgage. Mortgage applications are sorted into the program automatically.

Home Possible eligibility standards are straightforward.

You must live in the home you’re financing

Home Possible is for primary residences only. Homebuyers cannot use it to finance a second home, a rental property, or an investment. Co-signers are allowed and not required to live in the home. At least one person listed on the mortgage must live in the home.

Your home must be a 1-4 unit residence

Home Possible applies to single-family residences and multi-unit homes. Homes may be either standalone or attached to another home, as with townhomes or rowhomes. Condos are eligible for Home Possible, and certain manufactured homes are eligible, too.

Your mortgage must meet conventional mortgage standards

Home Possible is a Freddie Mac mortgage program, which means that loans must meet conventional mortgage guidelines. Loans must fall within conforming mortgage loan limits, amortize over 15 or 30 years, and use a fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage structure. Your income must be verifiable.

Your down payment must be at least 3%

Home Possible lets home buyers finance up to 97 percent of the purchase price. Buyers must bring a minimum down payment of three percent. Home Possible lets buyers use down payment assistance from most sources, including cash gifts from family or friends, grants, employer assistance programs, second mortgages, and sweat equity.

Your income must be below average for your area

Home Possible is an affordable mortgage program. It’s available to low- and moderate-income households only. Household income for eligible buyers may not exceed eighty percent of the area median income, which mortgage applicants can verify at the Freddie Mac website

Home buyers who earn too much money for Home Possible can access other low down payment loans, including Fannie Mae’s HomeReady mortgage and the Conventional 97 programs.

You may not owe money on more than one other mortgaged home

Home Possible allows home buyers to have a financial interest in one other mortgaged property, at most, which may be a vacation home or investment property. There are no restrictions on commercial property investments.

You must have a credit score of 660 or higher

Home Possible requires a minimum credit score of 660 for fixed-rate mortgages and 680 for adjustable-rate mortgages and manufactured homes. Freddie Mac’s credit scoring uses the mortgage FICO system, which ignores medical debt and collections. 2-4 unit homes may require higher credit scores to qualify.

You must attend a homeownership education class 

Freddie Mac requires first-time home buyers to complete a homeownership education course as part of their Home Possible approval. HUD-certified homeownership classes are available online and take approximately two hours to complete. Homeownership education reduces mortgage default risk by 42 percent. 

Get pre-approved for a mortgage today.

Home Possible Mortgage Rates and Mortgage Insurance

Home Possible is an affordable mortgage program for low- and moderate-income households. Eligible home buyers get access to lower mortgage rates than the general population. 

A typical Home Possible buyer will receive mortgage rates 0.25 percentage points below today’s mortgage rates. Buyers with high credit scores can receive discounts of a half-percentage point.

Home Possible subsidizes private mortgage insurance (PMI) for buyers, too.

First-time home buyers pay up to thirty basis points less for private mortgage insurance, which helps to make homes more affordable.

Home Possible buyers can pay $600 less per $100,000 borrowed per year than other first-time buyers.

Home Possible Income Limits

Home Possible is an affordable mortgage program for low- and moderate-income households. Freddie Mac defines low-to-moderate income as earning less income annually as compared to your nearest neighbors.

Low- and moderate-income home buyers may not earn more than eighty percent of the typical household income for their new home’s census tract, which can be viewed on the Freddie Mac website.

gif showing how to find the median income for the home possible loan

Home Possible Income limits vary by neighborhood. Eligible buyers get access to 3-percent-down mortgages, reduced interest rates, and lower monthly payments.

Verify your Home Possible eligibility with a mortgage pre-approval.

Alternatives to the Home Possible Mortgage

Home Possible is one of 7 government-backed, low down payment mortgage loans. It offers low mortgage rates and reduced mortgage insurance premiums to first-time home buyers and other homeowners.

Here are other low down payment mortgage options from which you can choose.

  • HomeReady: A 3% down payment mortgage from Fannie Mae. Similar to Home Possible and allows for lower credit scores.
  • Conventional 97: A 3% down payment mortgage via Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Best for buyers with higher credit scores and income.
  • FHA mortgage: 3.5% down payment mortgage backed by the Federal Housing Administration. Best for buyers with lower credit scores and buyers of 2-4 unit homes.
  • USDA mortgage: 0% down payment mortgage backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Available in lower-density areas to home buyers with modest income.
  • VA mortgage: 0% down payment mortgage backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, Available to active-duty military members, veterans, and surviving spouses.
  • HomePath®: A Fannie Mae low down payment program for buyers who want to purchase foreclosed homes from Fannie Mae directly.

You may qualify for federal home buyer tax credits and local down payment assistance.

Get pre-approved to check your eligibility.

Home Possible vs HomeReady

Freddie Mac’s Home Possible has slightly higher credit scores minimums and income limitations than Fannie Mae’s Homeready. Home Possible also does not allow home buyers to apply boarder and accessory unit income to their application.

A chart outlining the difference between Home Possible and Homeready loans

Freddie Mac Home Possible FAQ

What is the minimum credit score for Home Possible?

Home Possible requires a 660 minimum credit score for purchases of a single-family home using a fixed-rate mortgage. Home Possible requires a 680 minimum credit score when buyers use an adjustable-rate mortgage. Buyers of multi-unit properties may require a 700 minimum FICO.

Can I get a Home Possible mortgage if I don’t have a credit score?

Yes, Home Possible is available to home buyers with no credit score. Mortgage lenders can approve your loan application using alternative payment history.

What is the minimum down payment for Home Possible?

Home Possible requires a minimum down payment of three percent. Down payment money can come from any eligible source, including savings, cash gifts, employer benefits, and unsecured loans.

What is the maximum allowable debt-to-income ratio for Home Possible?

There is no explicit debt-to-income maximum for Home Possible. The program considers income, debt, credit history, and other factors for your mortgage approval. If your monthly debts exceed 43 cents for every earned dollar, other low down payment mortgage loans may be available to you.

Is Home Possible for first-time home buyers only?

No, Home Possible is for first-time home buyers, repeat buyers, and refinancing households.

What’s the difference between Home Possible and Home Ready?

Home Possible requires higher credit scores and allows home buyers to get their down payment money from a third-party source. Fannie Mae’s Home Ready requires buyers to bring at least three percent of their own money to a purchase.

Can I use gift funds with a Home Possible mortgage?

Yes, home buyers can use cash gifts for a down payment with the Home Possible mortgage program.

Can I purchase a multi-unit home using Home Possible?

Freddie Mac’s Home Possible allows buyers to purchase 2-unit, 3-unit, and 4-unit homes. Home buyers must live in one of the home’s units.

Can I use an adjustable-rate mortgage with Home Possible?

Yes, home buyers can use adjustable-rate mortgages with Home Possible. Freddie Mac enforces a 680 minimum credit score for buyers with ARMs.

Can I use Home Possible if I don’t have a credit score?

Yes, home buyers without a credit score can use Home Possible to purchase a home.

Do I apply for a Home Possible mortgage with Freddie Mac directly?

No, Freddie Mac is not a mortgage lender. Home buyers can apply for Home Possible and verify their eligibility with any mortgage lender.

Do I need to make a 20% down payment with Home Possible?

No, the minimum down payment requirement with Home Possible is 3 percent. 

What are today’s Home Possible mortgage rates?

Home Possible mortgage rates are available as part of a 3-minute pre-approval.

Get pre-approved for a mortgage today.

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