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FHA - Credit Requirements

what are FHA's credit requirements

FHA mortgages are popular with first-time home buyers, existing home owners who want to limit their out-of-pocket costs, and consumers who have limited - or less than perfect - credit histories. So what does FHA look for in a borrower’s credit profile? 

Credit depth 

FHA requires consumers to have two established credit accounts; however alternative credit sources can be considered by lenders on a case-by-case basis. 


Borrowers who are actively paying off a Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be eligible for FHA financing as long as they have been making satisfactory payment for the previous 12 months, can provide an acceptable explanation for the bankruptcy, have re-established good credit, and have been granted permission from the court to enter into new debt. 

For borrowers with a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, two years must have elapsed since the discharge date, they must have re-established good credit, and they must provide a satisfactory explanation for why the bankruptcy happened. However, if extenuating circumstances caused the bankruptcy, a 12-23 month waiting period since the discharge date may be acceptable. 

Foreclosure or Deed-in-Lieu 

Generally a 3-year waiting period is required for borrowers who have had a previous foreclosure or deed-in-lieu event. However, the waiting period may be reduced to 12-35 months if acceptable proof that the event was due to extenuating circumstances can be provided. 


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