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PMI insures your lender for part of your loan, not the full amount, if the loan is not repaid. This typically applies to conventional loans.

PMI may be necessary when a down payment is below 20%. Depending on the credit history of the homebuyer, PMI may cost between approximately 0.25% – 2.00% of the amount borrowed. And if you eventually build 20% equity in your home, you may be able to ask the lender to cancel the PMI.

An FHA loan is an insured loan made by the private lender that allows borrowers to purchase with a down payment as low as 3.5%.

VA loans don’t have any PMI requirements even though they allow a 0% down payment, but have a VA Funding Fee.

Your credit limit is determined by your security deposit. You can use your secured credit card like any credit card to make purchases such as gas or groceries, or for recurring phone bills, without changing your total monthly budget. And, just like a credit card, you make monthly payments of principal and interest. Some cards, like the Capital Bank OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card report to all three major credit bureau monthly. You can open an account for as little as $200 or up to $3,000 (subject to approval). By managing credit responsibly, you can improve your score.

There may be alternatives to providing a 20% down payment on the purchase of your home. By paying Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) premiums with your monthly payment on a Conventional loan, the down payment requirement may be reduced to 15% down, 10% down, 5% down and in some instances for a 1st time homebuyer even as little as 3% down. Some other options include FHA insured loans which require as little as 3.5% and also have Mortgage Insurance Premiums (MIP). Veterans Administration (VA) guaranteed loans also have low down payment options. To learn about PMI check out our FAQ on Private Mortgage Insurance.

Yes, you may use your own title company or use one from our preferred provider list. The lender, nor anyone else, can require you to purchase the insurance from a particular title company for either the lender’s coverage title insurance or the optional owner’s coverage title insurance. The title insurance and coverage must meet the lender requirements, though for the lender’s coverage.

Yes. Your lender will want to be sure the property has a clear title and will require a Lender’s Coverage Title Insurance policy. It is optional to purchase an Owner’s Coverage Title Insurance policy to protect yourself from threats to your title and ownership that may have gone undiscovered at the time of closing.