Connect With Us:

Conventional Loan Programs:

BorrowSmart: Grant Money

Conventional 97 Loan

Conventional 97 Loan vs. FHA

Conventional 97 vs FHA: A Low Down Payment Comparison

HomeOne Loan


HomeReady Loan (3%)

HomeReady vs. FHA

Home Possible Loan (3%)

Homestyle Renovation

Investment Property

Jumbo Loan

Second Home

5/1 ARM

2/1 Rate Buy Down

Conventional Refinance Programs:


Conventional Cash-out Refinance Guidelines

Maximum LTV Cash-Out Refinance

Conventional Articles

Conventional Loan Articles

Automated Underwriting

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Credit Requirements


Discount Points

Down Payment Minimum

Earnest Money

Gift Funds

HomePath Foreclosure

Income Requirement

Loan Limits

Minimum Down Payment

Mortgage Cosigner

Mortgage Escrow


Seller concession

Title Insurance on a Home

Private Mortgage Insurance

Do conventional loans require private mortgage insurance?

How Much is Private Mortgage Insurance on a Conventional Loan

What is Piggyback PMI Insurance?

What is a PMI in a mortgage?

When does private mortgage insurance go away?

What Are the Different Types of Mortgage Insurance?


Amortization Calculator

Calculate Loan Amount From Payment

Calculate Your Mortgage Loan-to-Value Ratio (LTV)

Credit Score Average Calculator

Extra payment calculator

Loan to value & calculator

Payment Calculator

Per Diem Interest

Prequalification Calculator

Affiliate Sites

FHA Loan Plus

USDA Loan Plus

VA Loan Plus

What You Need To Know About Conventional Loans

A cell phone is displaying the words Fannie MaeConventional loans are an essential financial tool for many people, and understanding the different types of traditional loans can be crucial in making informed decisions about your future. For those looking to buy a home or refinance their current mortgage, it is essential to know the basics of conventional loans. This article will give you everything you need to know about traditional loans and how they work.

What is a Conventional Loan, and How Does it Differ from Other Types of Mortgages?

Unlike other mortgage loans, the federal government does not insure or guarantee conventional mortgages. A lender often provides it, and the borrower is responsible for paying a specific interest rate for the duration of the loan. Borrowers usually need strong credit and fulfill specific financial standards established by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to qualify for a conventional loan.

When determining whether or not to accept a mortgage loan application, mortgage lenders will also consider the applicant's credit score.
In addition, borrowers may be required to pay certain types of mortgage insurance, depending on their credit score. An FHA loan is another mortgage loan insured by the Federal Housing Administration and requires lower down payments than conventional loans. The interest rates on conventional loans are set by Fannie Mae and vary based on the type of mortgage lender chosen by the borrower.

Eligibility Requirements for Conventional Loans

Different individuals may be eligible for other conventional loans depending on the lender and the kind of loan. Before applying for a traditional loan, consumers need to be aware of a few standard criteria.

Borrowers must have a strong credit score, implying they should have a track record of timely payments and little debt remaining. The borrower's debt-to-income ratio, which measures how much they owe about their income, is another factor that lenders will consider. The borrower can find it challenging to afford the loan if the ratio is too high.
Second, applicants must have a steady source of income, which implies that they should have reliable work and be able to document their employment history for a certain amount of time. Additionally, some lenders could require borrowers to have a certain amount in savings or other assets.

The third requirement is that borrowers provide a down payment. Conventional loans often need a larger down payment than other options, including FHA loans. Depending on the lender and the kind of loan, the down payment will vary, but it usually ranges from 3% to 20% of the purchase price.

Fourth, to apply for a conventional loan, applicants must have a valid ID, proof of income, evidence of assets, and other relevant papers.
It's crucial to remember that these are just broad recommendations and that different lenders may have other criteria. To learn about their individual needs and if they qualify, borrowers can inquire with several lenders. Working with a mortgage specialist is always advised since they can guide you through the procedure and help you locate the finest financing possibilities.

Comparing Conventional Loan Rates to Other Mortgage Options

Nice suburban homeConsumers must evaluate the interest rates of conventional loans compared to alternative mortgage choices. To determine this, one method is to examine the yearly percentage rate (APR).
The annual percentage rate, or APR, is the overall cost of the loan, including interest and fees. Borrowers may better understand which mortgage option is the most cost-effective by comparing the APR of a conventional loan to alternative mortgage choices.

To determine which lender is providing the best rate, borrowers may also compare the interest rates of several lenders. Furthermore, applicants may want to consider alternative possibilities like government-backed loans like FHA and VA loans, as they may offer various perks and interest rates. It's crucial to remember that interest rates might fluctuate over time, so it's a good idea to research the current rates before making a choice.

Choosing a Conventional Loan: The Pros and Cons

Choosing a conventional loan can have its advantages and disadvantages.
One of the main advantages is that the federal government does not back conventional loans; therefore, they are not subject to the exact loan requirements of government-backed loans. This means that borrowers may be able to qualify for a traditional loan with a lower credit score and less money for a down payment.

Additionally, conventional loans may offer more flexible terms and lower mortgage insurance premiums than other types. Another advantage of traditional loans is that they can be a good option for borrowers looking to purchase a high-value property.
Conventional loans are subject to the loan limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency, and therefore, borrowers may be able to borrow more. On the other hand, one of the main disadvantages of conventional loans is that they typically require a higher down payment than different types of loans. This can make it more challenging for some borrowers to obtain the necessary funds.

Additionally, conventional loans may have stricter eligibility requirements, and borrowers with lower credit scores may be charged higher interest rates.
Another disadvantage is that conventional loans may have a higher mortgage rate than government-backed loans, which can result in higher monthly mortgage payments.
It's essential to consider the pros and cons of a conventional loan before choosing this type of loan.

Borrowers should weigh the benefits and drawbacks and compare them to other loan options. It's always recommended to consult with a mortgage professional to understand the best options for your situation and to make an informed decision.

What's the Difference Between Conventional Loans vs. Government-Backed Mortgages?

FHA and conventional loans are both types of mortgages designed to help borrowers purchase a home. The main difference between the two is that FHA loans are insured by the Federal Housing Administration, while conventional loans are not. This means that with an FHA loan, the lender takes on less risk because the government protects it in case of default.

On the other hand, with a conventional loan, lenders assume more risk because there is no government insurance backing up the loan. Another critical difference between FHA and conventional loans is that FHA loans require mortgage insurance for the life of the loan. In contrast, conventional loans may not require mortgage insurance or only for a short period.

Additionally, FHA loan limits are generally lower than those for conventional loans, making them ideal for those with lower credit scores or who may not qualify for a traditional loan but still need to buy a home. Finally, private mortgage insurance is typically required if you take out a personal mortgage (as opposed to an FHA or conventional) and have a lower credit score or down payment.

The Impact of a Conventional Loan on Your Credit Score

A conventional loan may impact your credit score both favorably and unfavorably. On the plus side, regular payments on a traditional loan may help you build credit over time. This is because creditors will notice that you handle your debt responsibly, which may raise your credit score.

On the downside, requesting a conventional loan may cause a hard inquiry to appear on your credit record. When a lender reviews your credit report to assess your creditworthiness, it makes a hard inquiry. Your credit score may temporarily drop as a result of a tricky question.

However, this decline is probably slight and short-lived if your credit score is high. Additionally, it may be a bad sign for your credit score and may result in a drop in your score if you are not eligible for a conventional loan or are given a high-interest rate. Before applying for a traditional loan, reviewing your credit record and score is crucial. Consult a lender to understand better how this might affect your credit score.

How to Apply for a Conventional Loan and What to Expect During the Process

Although applying for a conventional loan might be simple, knowing what to anticipate is vital before you start.
The first step is obtaining all the required paperwork, including a valid ID, evidence of income, and proof of assets.

Additionally, you'll have to provide details about your work and credit histories. The next step is to locate a loan. Contacting banks, credit unions, or mortgage brokers can help you with this.

After you find a lender, you must fill out a loan application. After reviewing your application, the lender will examine your credit report and confirm your income and assets. After the lender accepts your application, you must pay for the appraisal and credit report.

Once the lender has completed processing your loan, you may close your mortgage. Depending on the lender and the kind of loan, the entire procedure might take a few weeks to a few months. It's a good idea to be ready, maintain excellent contact with the lender and the loan officer, and be prepared to submit any necessary supplementary information.

How to Get the Best Conventional Loan Rate

The borrower must do some homework and be ready to get the best rate on a conventional loan.

The borrower's credit score is one of the most crucial elements that lenders consider when setting the interest rate. Before requesting a loan, consumers must verify their credit score before ordering a loan and take steps to raise it if required. Higher credit scores increase the likelihood that borrowers will be approved for better interest rates.
Shopping around is another strategy for obtaining the most excellent deal.

Compare the interest rates offered by various lenders, including banks, credit unions, and mortgage brokers. Make careful inquiries about any possible loan-related fees or charges.
The loan-to-value ratio (LTV), which measures the relationship between the loan amount and the property's worth, is another option for borrowers. Borrowers with lower LTV ratios may be given a higher interest rate since lower LTV ratios are more favorable to lenders.
Furthermore, borrowers may modify the loan conditions to meet their requirements.

For instance, borrowers may choose a longer loan term to reduce their monthly payments, but doing so would result in their paying more interest overall. Or, borrowers may choose a loan with a shorter time and more outstanding monthly payments, which will cost less in interest overall.

Finally, borrowers need to be informed about the state of the market. Because interest rates might change based on the state of the economy, it's a good idea to research the most current rates before making a choice. Remember that although a low-interest rate is crucial, it is not the only aspect to consider when selecting a loan. Before choosing a loan choice, be sure to check the whole expenses, fees, and conditions.

How Much Can You Borrow with a Conventional Mortgage?

The maximum amount a lender will lend for a conventional or FHA loan is known as the loan limit. The loan restrictions for a single-family, duplex, triplex, and four-plex homes might fluctuate depending on the county.

For instance, if you require a loan in a neighborhood with high property values, the loan limit can be more significant than in an area with lower home values. You may need to apply for a jumbo loan if your loan amount exceeds the lending limit. The down payment and credit score criteria for conventional loans are more flexible than those for FHA loans. When choosing between a traditional and an FHA loan, you must thoroughly study your alternatives.

It's crucial to comprehend loan restrictions before applying for a loan since they may assist you in estimating the amount of money you'll need to borrow.

What Are the Advantages of a Conventional Loan for a First-Time Homebuyer?

Couple at settlementA conventional loan is a mortgage loan not insured by the government. It can be either fixed or adjustable rates and benefit those with a good credit score or a large down payment.

Some advantages of a conventional loan include low-interest rates and the opportunity to avoid paying mortgage insurance premiums. With FHA loans, borrowers are required to pay an upfront premium as well as an annual premium throughout the life of the loan, while with a conventional loan, there may be no mortgage insurance depending on the size of the down payment.

The loan limit for conforming loans is typically higher than for FHA loans, which can result in lower monthly payments for some borrowers. Private mortgage insurance may also be available for those who do not qualify for a conforming loan but still need assistance with their down payment. Overall, a conventional loan may offer more flexibility than other loan types of mortgages and could save you money over the life of your loan.

Is a Conventional Mortgage Right for You?

If you're planning to purchase a house, a conventional home loan, one of the most common kinds of mortgages, could be your best option. Applicants must have excellent credit and fulfill the lender's conditions to qualify for a conventional loan. Conventional loans are wholly financed and serviced by private lenders; any government agency does not guarantee them.

Borrowers often get better interest rates with conventional loans than other loans; thus, they appeal to those with excellent credit seeking the cheapest mortgage rates. Ultimately, your unique financial circumstances and objectives will determine whether or not a conventional house loan is the best option for you.


In conclusion, conventional loans are an excellent option for borrowers with good credit and sufficient funds for a down payment. Borrowers should understand the various loan requirements, such as private mortgage insurance, that may be needed to qualify. By understanding these factors, borrowers will be confident to make the right choice when selecting a conventional loan. Additionally, it's shopping around and comparing offers from lenders to get this essential the best rate and terms available.