The state of Ohio works with mortgage companies, lenders and credit unions to offer home loans to people with low and moderate incomes, including first-time home buyers.
The Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) helps low- and moderate-income borrowers get 30-year, fixed-rate conventional, Federal Housing Administration, Veterans Affairs and U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development mortgages with relaxed income and purchase price limits. OHFA also has a number of programs that assist first-time buyers and others buying a home. Benefits include lower mortgage rates, down payment assistance, tax credits and combined financing for buying and renovating a home. Besides basic eligibility rules, each program may have additional requirements.
About OHFA and eligibility requirements
- A free homebuyer education course is required after borrowers submit a mortgage application
- Down payment assistance is available for first-time home buyers and is forgiven after seven years unless the home is sold or refinanced during that time
- There are limits on purchase price and borrowers’ incomes, which vary by county and the number of people in a family
- A minimum credit score is 640 for conventional mortgages and USDA, VA, and FHA 203(k) home loans
- A minimum credit score is 660 for other FHA loans
- Each type of loan has its own debt-to-income requirements
- Veterans who’ve been honorably discharged are eligible for VA loans. They do not have to be first-time home buyers.
- Eligible property types for these programs include existing single-family homes, duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes and condominiums; one-unit existing modular homes; and newly built single-family homes.