Forgivable Equity Builder Loan program is a mortgage program created by the California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA), designed to provide affordable housing opportunities to low-income families who otherwise would not qualify for conventional mortgages.
Forgivable equity builder loans are designed to give homeowners who want to build home equity access to low-interest rate financing.
What Is Forgivable Equity Builder Loan All About?
Forgivable equity builder loan is a type of loan that allows borrowers to build up equity in their home by making installments over time.
This type of loan can be helpful for people who are looking to buy a home but don’t have enough money available to do so right away.
Forgivable equity builder loan was created to assist qualified borrowers who do not meet the traditional lending criteria but still want to build home equity.
These borrowers may have limited access to capital due to poor credit history, lack of collateral, or inability to obtain financing from private lenders.
The Forgivable Equity Builder Loan gives first-time homebuyers a head start on this with immediate home equity via a loan of up to 10% of the home’s purchase price. The loan is forgivable if the borrower continuously occupies the home as their primary residence for five years.
The interest on forgivable equity builder loans is typically lower than other loans, so borrowers can afford to pay back the loan more quickly.
A forgivable equity builder loan allows borrowers to use the funds they borrow to finance home improvements.
Forgivable Equity Builder Loan Requirements
Forgivable equity builder allows homeowners to access up to $10,000 in funds to improve their properties. To qualify, applicants must meet certain criteria, including having sufficient equity in their homes, being able to document the cost of the proposed improvements, and demonstrating financial responsibility.
Applicants must also pass a credit check and submit documentation showing proof of insurance coverage.
To qualify for a Forgivable Equity Builder loan, applicants must meet the following requirements:
- Must not owe any debt secured by the property.
- Must have a good credit history.
- Must have sufficient funds available to cover the cost of improvements.
- Must have completed the required work on the property.
- The lender may require proof of insurance coverage.
- The borrower must complete construction within 12 months after receiving approval.
- The borrower cannot already have another mortgage on the property.
- Own a qualifying asset
Applicants may apply for a Forgivable Home Equity Loan if they own one of the following qualifying assets:
Real Estate – Any residential property owned by the applicant, such as single-family homes, duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes, townhouses, condominiums, cooperative apartments, mobile homes, manufactured homes, land, vacant land, undeveloped land, or any interest therein.
Business Interests – A business entity or partnership that owns 100% of the stock of a corporation, limited liability company, sole proprietorship, general partnership, limited partnership, joint venture, or unincorporated association. Business entities include corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, and unincorporated associations.
Personal Vehicle – Any vehicle used exclusively for transportation purposes, including automobiles, trucks, vans, motorcycles, motorized bicycles, recreational vehicles, trailers, boats, jet skis, snowmobiles, and similar items.
Forgivable Equity Builder Loan Credit Scores Requirements
Forgivable equity builder loan credit scores requirement is now a common requirement for many lenders. Forgivable loans have a lower interest rate and shorter term than other types.
Borrowers must have a minimum score of 580 on the FICO® Score 8 or 620 on the VantageScore 3.0. Applicants whose credit history includes late payments, foreclosures, bankruptcies, repossessions, short sales, or other derogatory credit events will not be considered for a Forgivable Mortgage.
Lenders will also look at the borrower’s current debt-to-income ratio and total assets to determine if they can repay the debt on time.
Forgivable Equity Builder Loan Income Limits
Homeowners applying for a Forgivable Equity Builder Loan must earn no more than 80 percent of area median household income (AMI). AMI is determined by ZIP code and is updated annually. To determine whether a borrower qualifies for a Forgivable Loan, lenders calculate the borrower’s income by comparing his or her gross monthly income to the applicable AMI limit.
Lenders set maximum annual income limits for borrowers. The income limit varies depending on whether the borrower has a single family residence or a multi-family residence.
Single Family Residence
Maximum Annual Income Limit $150,000
Maximum Annual Salary Limit $75,000
Note: The income limit does not apply to self-employed borrowers.
How to Apply for Forgivable Equity Builder Loan program
Banks and mortgage lenders offer forgivable equity builder loans if the borrower meets specific criteria. There are two types of forgivable equity builder loans:
• Home Improvement Mortgage – A home improvement mortgage allows the homeowner to improve his/her property while maintaining ownership.
• Rehabilitation Mortgage – A rehabilitation mortgage allows the homeowner to repair or renovate existing structures such as bathrooms, kitchens, roofs, decks, garages, windows, doors, fences, sheds, patios, porches, fireplaces, and water heaters.
After completing the application form, applicants should submit supporting documentation, such as tax returns, bank statements, W-2 forms, proof of employment, and copies of mortgages.
Lenders review applications and decide whether to approve them. Approved borrowers then complete the closing process, which usually takes two weeks. Once the lender approves the loan, the borrower receives a letter confirming the approval.
After submitting the required documents, lenders review the application and verify the borrower’s identity and financial condition. Lenders consider the borrower’s ability to repay the loan, the amount of equity in the home, and the borrower’s credit history. They also check the property’s value against the outstanding balance of the existing mortgage.
If approved, the lender sends the borrower a notice of acceptance, which contains terms and conditions of the loan agreement. The borrower signs the document and returns it to the lender. At this point, the borrower becomes legally obligated to repay the loan.
The lender closes the transaction within two weeks after receiving the signed contract from the borrower. After the closing, the lender issues a title insurance policy to protect the buyer’s interests.
Forgivable Loans are available only at participating lenders. Contact your local lender for details.
Forgivable equity builder loan programs are a great way to get into the mortgage industry. All you need to know about these programs is in this article so that you can apply and receive the proper financial assistance.
Forgivable equity builder loan is relatively straightforward to apply and requires only a few basic details about the business. If you are interested in applying, read the application guide carefully and submit your information on time. You may find the process to be extremely helpful and rewarding.