Credit Challenged

At Geneva Financial we strive to offer you the most robust product line! Just because you have a low credit score does not necessarily mean you cannot purchase your own home.

Loan Programs with Lower Credit

Here’s a quick breakdown of government programs and how they can help lower credit borrowers:


  • Borrowers who have lower credit scores and not much cash for a down payment may find it easier to qualify for an FHA loan than a conventional loan.
  • Minimum FICO score of 620 (3.5% down payment).
  • Borrowers with scores below 620 may still qualify with 10% down payment.
  • Backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).
  • Only FHA-approved lenders can offer these loans.
  • Allow seller-paid closing costs up to 6% of the loan.
  • Streamline refinancing options available.
  • Two mortgage insurance premiums required: upfront mortgage insurance premium (UMIP) and annual mortgage insurance premium (AMIP).
  • One-Time Close Construction Loan option available for new construction homes.



  • Eligible military/veteran borrowers with less-than-perfect credit scores and no money to use toward a down payment may find it easier to qualify for a VA loan than a conventional loan.
  • No set minimum credit score; instead, most lenders use credit benchmarks of 620.
  • 100% financing available ($0 money down).
  • One-time VA funding fee required.
  • No private mortgage insurance (PMI) required.
  • Available mainly to eligible veterans, active duty military and surviving spouses of veterans.
  • Interest Rate Reduction Refinance (IRRRL) option available.
  • One-Time Close Construction Loan option available for new construction homes.



  • Borrowers with less-than-perfect credit scores, low to moderate income and no money to use as a down payment may find it easier to qualify for a USDA mortgage than a conventional mortgage.
  • Available to home buyers who are purchasing a home located in a USDA-approved rural area.
  • Minimum credit score of 640 needed to qualify.
  • Streamlined-Assist Refinance option available.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac also have options for lower credit borrowers.




Ways to improve your credit:

Improving credit takes time and patience, check out these tips below to manage your credit best:

  • Try to maintain low balances on your credit cards and other revolving credit. If you cannot pay the balance in full, focus on consistently making payments over the minimum. Low balances help boost your credit score.
  • Consider consolidating your debt. This is the process of combining all of your smaller debts into one large debt (that usually carries a lower interest rate). Look into balance transfers or other resources to roll your high balance high interest cards into one. If you are a homeowner with a mortgage, look into a cash out refinance to pay off your debts. The interest rate on your mortgage is almost certainly going to be lower than the rates on your credit cards.
  • Check your credit report. You can request a copy of your credit report once per year from each of the three major credit bureaus: TransUnion*, Experian and Equifax*. You can also go to to check all three scores. Make sure everything on your credit report is accurate.