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First-Time Homebuyer Loans

You don’t have to rent forever.

If you’re dreaming of owning your first home, it may be easier than you might think. Being a first-time homebuyer can actually work to your advantage by giving you access to a wider number of assistance programs, loan products, and services that can make your homeownership dreams a reality.


You may be able to buy a house without putting any money down.

One of the most common misconceptions when it comes to getting a mortgage is the down payment requirement. But here’s what you need to know: you may be able to put zero or little money down to own your own home.

At United, we’ve designed unique loans to help make homeownership possible for more people, regardless of how much they do or don’t have for a down payment.

We developed our PATH loan1 to allow buyers in certain areas to take advantage of a 0% down, fixed-rate mortgage up to $647,200. Fixed-rate means your monthly payment won’t change over the life of the loan, making it easier to budget without worrying that your interest rate will change. You also don’t need perfect credit—PATH comes with a 680 minimum FICO score (and a minimum 640 FICO in certain areas of Atlanta, Raleigh, and Miami).

How much house could you afford?

Most financial advisors don’t recommend spending more than 28% of your gross monthly income on housing. Let’s put that into real numbers for you: For someone earning a salary of $40,000, that 28% comes out to $11,200. Break that out over 12 months, and you’re looking at a mortgage payment of about $933.
You also want to consider the other debt you carry (things like your car payment, student loans, etc.). Experts say your total debt, including what you pay for housing, shouldn’t be more than 36% (that’s about $14,400 on a $40,000 salary).

Let's talk about credit.

Your credit score gives lenders a general idea of how likely you are to pay off debt. Generally speaking, the higher the score, the more likely it is that the borrower is going to make payments on time and keep their account in good standing.
Low and zero down payment options typically require a minimum credit score between 620 and 680. Credit score is important, but it’s just one of the factors that goes into the mortgage application process. Our team also looks at things like your debt-to-income ratio (how much you owe vs. how much you make), your employment and your assets.

What about closing costs?

You’ve found the house, but before you move your plants in, you have to sign the paperwork at closing, and that comes with some cost. We’ve got you covered there, too. We offer several closing cost assistance programs to make sure you can cross the threshold into homeownership.

Ready to get started?

Begin your secure application now.



Find out how these new financing options can benefit you. 
Connect with you local lender today!

Call 1-800-914-8224 to get started.

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You can also contact our mortgage experts at 800-914-8224.


Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use cash for my down payment?

Yes and no. Because you need to source where the down payment comes from, you’ll need to use money that’s in a checking or savings account with your name on it instead of actual cash in hand. You can either bring a cashier’s check to closing or have the money wired from the bank to the attorney. The final answer depends on the attorney, so make sure to ask them what exactly you should do.

What is the difference between interest rate and APR?

The mortgage interest rate is the rate you’re paying to borrow money, and the APR is the cost of obtaining the loan over time (so it will always be higher than the interest rate). The APR takes certain fees associated with the loan into account and then breaks it into a yearly rate.

What is a debt-to-income ratio and how do I calculate it?

Debt to income (DTI) is the percentage of your gross income that goes toward your monthly debt (or bills). You calculate DTI by dividing your monthly debt by your monthly gross income. For example, if you bring in $4,000 in income each month and pay $2,000 in bills, your DTI is 50%.

What are the steps to buy a home?

There are a lot of moving parts to the home buying process – and just about as many people! You’ll work with your lender, real estate agent, the seller, the listing agent, home inspector, maybe a transaction coordinator or two – the list goes on and on. So where do you even start? Click here for the details:

How does the application process work?

Your first step is to talk to one of our mortgage experts (an MLO). After that conversation, we’ll determine the best loan products and interest rates available to you based on information you provide. Be prepared to share bank statements, W2s, paystubs, tax returns (in some cases), and a government issued ID. We use a secure, digital portal to collect and make it easy to share all of these documents.  
The PATH loan also requires proof of your last 12 months of rental payments, so if you’re interested in this option, it’ll be helpful to have those on hand. You can use canceled checks used to pay rent, get a letter from your landlord, or provide bank statements showing a recurring debit from your bank account.

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Member FDIC. © 2022 United Community Bank | NMLS #421841 | | United Community Bank Mortgage services is the mortgage lending division of United Community Bank. We are an approved seller/service for the Federal National mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). Normal credit criteria apply.

1Limited to FL, GA, NC, SC, and TN. Not all borrowers will qualify. This is not a commitment to lend. Subject to normal credit underwriting criteria. Offer subject to change without notice.